Participate in ASHT's Companion Clinic Program

Posted by Courtney Retzer Vargo, OTD, OTR/L, CHT on 01/29/2018

The world is getting smaller. New technology has made it faster to connect with people around the globe, reaching even the most remote corners, an unthinkable probability a decade ago. Cheap and easy internet-based communication has replaced expensive, hardwired phone lines allowing people to connect via chat messaging and even video at little to no cost, both with archived messages or in real time. Because of this, taking part in ASHT's Companion Clinic Program is now easier than ever!

In addition, the ASHT International Committee is excited to announce your participation in the Companion Clinic Program can now earn you CEUs to be used toward certified hand therapist recertification under the Hand Therapy Certification Commission's Category E, similar to ASHT's Mentorship Program. For more information, please click here

The Companion Clinic Program pairs a U.S. clinic or hand therapist with an individual in a developing country, providing a unique opportunity to create relationships between therapists practicing under a diverse set of circumstances. Through regular communication, members pursue collaboration, clinical education and professional growth while promoting best practice in the field of hand therapy around the world. The Companion Clinic Program also offers members networking opportunities, the development of new skills, and the satisfaction of actively assisting in the standardization of hand therapy practice on a global scale.

Following the completion of a simple online survey, the International Committee will pair interested U.S. members or clinics with their international counterparts based on need, expertise and language. The International Committee suggests scheduling regular monthly “appointments.” Internet applications such as Skype, Facetime or WhatsApp are strongly recommended, along with traditional email to discuss interesting topics, case studies or local barriers to practice; however, how often cohorts meet and topics discussed are completely up to each partnership. The International Committee encourages contributors to post successful strategies and important information gleaned from the program on the international list serv site. We also urge participants to consult the Companion Clinic Communication Guide - a resource list for communication and information sharing across continents. International Committee liaisons will be available on an ongoing basis to offer support and troubleshoot communication challenges. Companion clinic partnerships may be indefinite, as long as both parties remain interested in maintaining the relationship.

Interested? Visit the Companion Clinic Program section of our International page to learn more!