Orthopedic Impairment (OT/PT)
In Marion, Polk, and Yamhill Counties, therapy services are provided through focused services to provide supports to the educational participation and progress of students. Staff are licensed physical therapists, occupational therapists, or therapy assistants. Our highly specialized Orthopedic Impairment (OI) staff support individuals eligible under OI from birth through 21 years of age who present with complex motor needs. Occupational & Physical Therapists can significantly increase the success of a student through the development and implementation of strategies that assist in making the curriculum and/or instructional environment accessible and support the education program of the child/student.
Our services include:
- Lending library of adaptive equipment and assistive technology devices
- Consultation regarding OI evaluation and eligibility
- Assistance with equipment selection as well as appropriate fitting and use
- Collaboration with teams to assess motor skills to identify supports needed
- Development of systems so that students are better able to access their environment, increase independence and interact socially across a variety of settings
Regional Services for districts include a lending library of adaptive equipment and assistive technology devices for students who receive services through WESD programs.
Equipment borrowed from WESD Regional Lending Library is for use with students who are eligible as orthopedically impaired and is needed to meet their educational goals. Requests for equipment are made by the therapist serving that student.
What is an Orthopedic Impairment in an educational setting?
Educational Orthopedic Impairment means there is a motor disability stemming from a medical condition such as cerebral palsy, spinal bifida, muscular dystrophy or a traumatic injury that adversely affects the child's ability to access their education.
Orthopedic impairment is defined in the Oregon Administrative Rules as “a motor disability that adversely affects the child’s educational performance. The term includes impairments caused by an anomaly, disease or other conditions (e.g., cerebral palsy, spina bifida, muscular dystrophy or traumatic injury).” OAR 581-015-2000 (4)(g); however, medical diagnosis alone is not a criteria for service. School therapy is limited in IDEA 2004 and Section 504 to assuring that students have access to their education and are able to learn unique skills related to their disability. Some children with disabilities are independent and able to participate in the general education environment without therapy services to provide modifications or accommodations. These students do not receive school therapy services even though they have a documented disability.
If a child is suspected of having an orthopedic impairment, the following evaluation shall be conducted:
- A medical statement or a health assessment statement indicating a diagnosis of an orthopedic or neuromotor impairment or a description of the motor impairment;
- A standardized motor assessment, including the areas of fine motor, gross motor and self-help, when appropriate, by a specialist knowledgeable about orthopedic or neuromotor development;
- Assessments to determine the impact of the suspected disability:
- On the child’s educational performance for a school-age child; or
- On the child’s developmental progress for a preschool child; and
- Additional evaluations or assessments that are necessary to identify the child’s educational needs.
For a child suspected of having an orthopedic impairment, the child shall meet all of the following minimum criteria:
- The child has a motor impairment, which results in deficits in the quality, speed or accuracy of movement. These deficits must be documented by a score of two or more standard deviations below the mean in one or more of the three motor areas (fine motor, gross motor, and self-help), or functional deficits in at least two of the three motor areas; and
- The child’s condition is permanent or is expected to last for more than 60 calendar days. OAR 581-015-2160 (2)(a)(b)
- The eligibility team must also determine that: (a) “The child’s disability has an adverse impact on the child’s educational performance; and, (b) The child needs special education services as a result of the disability.” OAR 581-015-2160 (3)(a)(b)