Conference Program from May 23, 2019


Paediatric Powered Mobility: Earlier Intervention
Rachel Fabiniak – permobil

Motor skills develop rapidly during a child’s first three years of life, providing a means for exploration and socialisation necessary for development. For children with neuromuscular or musculoskeletal impairments, power mobility devices may be necessary for independence within their environment. Research shows that functional, independent mobility in children with disabilities can help to improve cognitive and perceptual skills, reduce learned helplessness, increase confidence, and facilitate participation with peers in everyday activities. This lecture will discuss the current evidence for early powered mobility as well as what medical and commercial products are available for use with this population.


It’s a Big World Out There
Debbie Wilson – Seating to go

This presentation is a personal reflection from my involvement in the International Wheelchair Stakeholders meeting I attended in Bangalore, India, in 2018, and the Seating To Go partnership with Motivation Australia in the Pacific Islands. Being part of a busy wheelchair and seating assessment service in New Zealand can be all consuming and these opportunities have developed my awareness of global initiatives and approaches to service provision in less resourced countries. Feedback from the first Pacific Rehabilitation and Mobility Conference being held in Fiji in April will be incorporated into the presentation.


Assistive Technologies and the Power of Sport
Raylene Bates – Athletics New Zealand

Dan Buckingham – Attitude

Nicholas Heyworth – Invacare

Nafi Lefono – Natural Mechanics

Our presenters will look to engage the audience in a discussion about why assistive technologies are so important to help those that need them to engage in sport and physical activity. Examples from a range of sports will be used to help bring to life the roles coaches, athletes, healthcare professionals and many others plays in making this happen. We know about the Power of Sport; this sessions will look to make sure we know how everyone can benefit from it!


Power Assist: Navigating the Options
Margaret Blake and Wendy Hartley – Seating to go


The Case for Bluetooth: Technology Leading to Independence
Jay Doherty – Quantum Rehab

Technology continues to advance at a pace faster than most of us can keep up with. Along with advancements in technology often comes a greater level of independence for people with disabilities. Bluetooth and Wi-Fi combined are two of the technologies that offers a great deal of independence for individuals who are slowly losing their function or have lost significant independent function already. This course will review the capabilities that Bluetooth, Infrared and Wi-Fi offer individuals with disabilities and how these technologies enhance the independence of these individuals.


Technological Advances in Complex Rehab Power Wheelchair: Technology Contribution to Positive Outcomes
Jay Doherty – Quantum Rehab


Product Design Meets Real Client Needs: An In-Depth Case Study
Joana Santiago – medifab

Without people in mind, design is blind (Gwynn, K.). In any field, product design must be linked to a need, clearly identified in the market. That’s even more crucial when that need comes from clients who, due to their challenging postural requirements, have reduced product options to choose from. How can we support a client with significant asymmetries having access to an off-the-shelf cushion, and this way respect his wish of not going on a custom/bespoke path? Furthermore, how can we push that design forth to other people with similar needs? This presentation will involve an in-depth case study of a consumer from the physical evaluation to the different steps a product design went through.


Is it Possible to Implement Safe Patient Handling with a Reduced
Number of Carers?
Ole Lindahl Thy – etac

The number of elderly people in our society is increasing and will continue to increase. At the same time the birth rate in most countries in the industrialized world is decreasing, which will lead to a situation where fewer hands will be available to take care of a growing care-demanding population.

These factors are the motivation to consider different moving and handling situations, methods and products that will contribute in reducing the number of carers.
This session will discuss and demonstrate different moving and handling techniques, methods and products to reduce the number of helpers around patients with care needs.


The ICF and Functional Outcomes for Children and Adults with
Cerebral Palsy and Other Motor Disabilities
Kathy Davidson – Sir Keith Park Special School

Education and services for individuals with developmental delays requires a multidimensional approach. This session will explore learning environments that specialize in functional mobility skills. It is imperative to design a learning environment based on the Dynamic Systems Theory that allows for multiple strategies that are interwoven. Concepts of motor control and motor learning will be explained as fundamental to providing a participation framework where activities and routines provide for structured practice to teach motor skills. As an example of an activity based, task-oriented approach, an overview will be provided of essential elements of the MOVE Program.


Technician Certification – Understanding the DMERT Credentialing
and DME Repair Technician
Matthew Macpherson – FIOS DME Repair Training

This class will take a deep look at the current skills model of technical training ans how to improve upon this model without reinventing the wheel, but to utilize formal training programes in our industry. 

*Program subject to change