The Tangibles & Intangibles of Quality Patient Care
This month we welcome BOC as our guest blogger to highlight the human side of the prosthetist-patient relationship.
Since BOC is a credentialing organization, it may seem logical to conclude that BOC focuses solely on the tangible aspects of orthotics and prosthetics – like training, exams, and continuing education. Although all these things are important, the O&P professional also focuses on the intangibles of the profession. For Donald Dotter, BOCPO, those include long-term relationships and personal connections.
Donald decided to become an orthotist / prosthetist after completing a health care internship program at Antelope Valley Orthotics and Prosthetics (AVOP) during high school. After earning a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology from California State University of Northridge, he earned BOC certification as an Orthotist / Prosthetist and returned to work at AVOP. He found that prosthetics in particular afforded him the opportunity to build long-term, even lifetime, relationships with his patients. He wanted to watch his patients grow and adapt to their prostheses; he wanted to witness the impact of technology in increasing their quality of life.
When asked what inspires him most about his work, Donald notes that he gets excited when he can help his patients do the things they were able to before their limb loss. It’s celebrating their small victories – returning to work, transferring themselves from bed to chair, or fixing breakfast for their kids in the morning – that get him excited to go to work in the morning.
And what’s the best way to help amputees see what they can do? For Donald, it’s connecting new amputees with others who have learned to adapt and function at a high level. Claudia Zacharias, MBA, CAE, BOC’s President and CEO, witnessed the value of this at the Amputee Coalition’s youth camp, where she volunteered the past two summers. “The most powerful experience is a shared experience. It was so inspiring to see amputees young and old learn from each other.”
BOC recognizes that both the tangibles and intangibles are crucial for providing quality patient care. For information on becoming a BOC-certified prosthetist, orthotist, pedorthist, orthotic fitter, or mastectomy fitter, visit the BOC website.