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In the Feb. 2011 Issue
2011 CAAHEP Annual Meeting - Ready to Rock 'n Roll
Spotlight on: Orthotics and Prosthetics
From the Health Care Careers eLetter
Accreditation Actions
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Have You Completed Your AMA Survey?

The annual survey of health professions education programs from the American Medical Association (AMA) is now available, with participation from CAAHEP-accredited programs. This survey is collecting program data for the 2009-2010 academic year, including numbers of enrollments, attrition, and graduates by gender and race/ethnicity.


Please respond, if you haven't already, to ensure that your program's free listing in the AMA's annual Health Care Careers Directory is correct and up-to-date.


If you have not yet received your survey via e-mail, please contact the survey hotline at or (312) 324-3140.


Reminder: Be sure to order your copy of the 2010-11 Health Care Careers Directory. CAAHEP programs and institutions can receive a special $25 rate (plus shipping), versus a cover price of $70.

 Message from the President
LaCheeta McPherson Picture
LaCheeta McPherson, PhD, MLS (ASCP) cm

To say that this new year has begun with challenges can be an understatement for many. Severe weather conditions have impacted travel, business and education. For me personally, my college has lost five days of instruction, a statistic that has not occurred in the 45-year history of the institution. Needless to say, we are learning to be flexible. 

The CAAHEP office ended and began its year with new challenges as well. Our Executive Director, Kathy Megivern, was presented with a subpoena for CAAHEP in December from the Florida Attorney General's (AG) Office. The subpoena was related to programs in for-profit institutions. Florida's AG office has presented similar subpoenas to every accrediting body doing business in Florida. It is believed that this action is in response to last year's reports coming from the federal GAO that made national headlines, as well as other stories related to health profession programs in for-profit institutions. Once again, the value of programmatic accreditation is illustrated. 

Last month's annual Leadership Conference in Clearwater, Florida provided CoA leaders an opportunity to hear the latest news coming from Washington, DC. Accreditation continues to come under fire as the Department of Education seeks new regulations to enhance the integrity of Title IV student financial aid programs. Among the latest regulation proposed is a federal definition of credit hour. CAAHEP will continue to monitor these activities as they impact our programs.

CoA leaders also had the opportunity to hear from Dr. Mark Taylor again. His presentations always enlighten and entertain. The focus of his presentation was recruiting and working with a new generation of board members. Needless to say, his words were taken to heart as the attendees realized the importance of recruiting a new generation of volunteers.

Other presentations at our Leadership Conference included our annual "CAAHEP Policy Update" and "An Analysis of Citations." It was found that most programs are given citations regarding  Resources (curriculum) or Program Goals (appropriateness of goals and learning domains).

Prior to the Leadership Conference, the board of directors and CoA liaisons met to hear reports on each CoA. Joining us in this meeting was a site visitor representing CHEA, the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. The site visit report is part of the CHEA review process. I feel certain that we impressed our site visitor as he described CAAHEP as one of the most complex accrediting agencies that he was aware of. He seemed quite impressed with the relationship between CAAHEP and the CoA's. I will keep you all informed of our progress in the CHEA recognition process, as reports become available.

Lastly, I would like to remind everyone of CAAHEP's 17th annual meeting, April 10-11, in Memphis, Tennessee. In reviewing the agenda, I am impressed with the quality of speakers and topics slated to be presented.  For additional details on the annual meeting, refer to the Annual Meeting page on the CAAHEP website.

I wish you all a good spring, as we weather the balance of our winter season. I hope to see many of you in Memphis in April.



2011 CAAHEP Annual Meeting
The 2011 CAAHEP Annual Meeting, "Memphis Beat: In Tune with the Future of Higher Education," is ready to rock 'n roll! The agenda has been set and includes a great keynote address by surgeon, author and pilot, Dr. Richard Karl, along with a Washington Update by Elise Scanlon, a Spotlight on Professions to highlight the Anesthesia Team and Recreational Therapy, a Spotlight on Sponsors, and a session on Medicine and Allied Health: "Where to from Here," by Fred Lenhoff and Dr. Darlyne Menscer.  With all of this great information and a Memphis location, you won't want to miss a beat! Be sure to join us for the 2011 meeting - April 10-11, 2011, at the Westin Memphis Beale Street, in Memphis, Tennessee.  Visit the CAAHEP website for additional information on the 2011 Annual Meeting.
2011 CAAHEP Annual Meeting logo
Spotlight on:  Orthotics and Prosthetics

The practice of orthotics and prosthetics has its history in the artisans and other skilled craftsmen of the past. Many of the developments of the 20th century in both professions came out of the world wars and the polio epidemics of the 1950s. Today's practitioners work in a variety of settings and useO&Pspotlight innovative materials and techniques to restore function and provide relief for various impairments.


Between the world wars, practitioners began to view themselves as clinicians and professionals caring for patients rather than as craftspeople and blacksmiths hammering on leather and metal. The rehabilitation of people with disabilities was becoming a priority.


Orthotics and prosthetics is a specialized health care profession combining a unique blend of clinical and technical skills. Orthotists and prosthetists evaluate patients and custom design, fabricate and fit orthoses and prostheses. Orthotic patients have neuromuscular and musculoskeletal disorders, and prosthetic patients have a partial or total absence of a limb. Orthotists and prosthetists give their patients the ability to lead more active and independent lives by working with other members of the rehabilitation team to create a treatment plan and custom device. This work requires substantial clinical and technical skill and judgment.


The practice of an orthotist and/or prosthetist includes patient evaluation, formulation of a treatment plan, prosthetic or orthotic design, fabrication, fitting and modification, follow-up treatment care and practice management.


In response to the needs of the profession, the National Commission on Orthotic and Prosthetic Education (NCOPE) has worked to promote and raise O&P education standards. In 2010, the Standards requirement for entry to the practitioner level was raised to a professional masters for primary O&P education.  NCOPE believes the single biggest determination factor for moving from a bachelor's level to the professional master's level is the body of knowledge and its expansion over the past 10 to 15 years. The profession has seen an evolution of education from a technical model to a clinical model. With the adoption in 2010 of new master's level standards, NCOPE is working with all of the current programs as they transition to the new standards as well as working with new programs that may be developed. 


The O&P profession's future outlook is bright and the need for services in the future will be great - especially with the aging baby boomer population.In an effort to try and expand the current number of education programs, NCOPE is working on an initiative to see the creation of five new O&P programs within the next five years as well as the creation of pre-O&P programs. 



From the Health Care Careers eLetter
Submitted by: Fred Donini-Lenhoff, Medical Education Communications Director, AMA
Missing in translation: Education not aligned with workplace needs?

Is there a gap between education and practice in some health care fields?


One Certified Coding Associate describes "the gap between my medical coding education and the real world of coding in the job market," and her inability to find an entry-level position in medical coding.


"There needs to be some sort of standardization in the education so that experience in the form of internships or apprenticeships are all part of certification programs," she adds. "My community college is definitely lacking and is misleading students like me who believed I would have what I need to start a coding career."


Others in the field agree that this is a concern:


  • "The correspondence school I went through didn't have an internship and simply tried to drive home that I didn't need it. I just needed to be assertive about how good and practical my training was."
  • "It is frustrating to think that after all our hard work, hopes and dreams, we will not get hired because no one will want someone with little hands-on experience."
  • "My college made it sound [easy] to work from home. I attempted that but unless you are established with experience no one wants to take a chance on your services."


Note: Under the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) Approved Coding Certificate Program (ACCP) criteria, an approved coding program must have a professional practice experience-either field-based externship, virtual simulation, or a hybrid combination.


Is this problem isolated to coding, or is it happening in other health care fields as well? Send your responses to


For more news and information on future trends in health care careers and education, check out the free Health Care Careers e-Letter, published monthly by the American Medical Association (AMA).


To subscribe, send an e-mail to or call (312) 464-4635.


P.S.  Are you a Facebook fan? Then check out the Health Professions Network (HPN) page for the latest news, information, and updates on allied health and health care career trends.


Accreditation Actions


The following programs received CAAHEP accreditation at the January 20, 2011, Board of Directors Meeting:


Cardiovascular Technology Training Inc. - Adult Echocardiography, Lacombe, LA (Certificate)
Spokane Community College - Noninvasive Vascular Study, Spokane, WA (Associate)



University of Medicine & Dentistry for New Jersey - North, Newark, NJ (Baccalaureate)



Broward College, Ft Lauderdale, FL (Cardiac) (Certificate, Associate)

Broward College, Ft Lauderdale, FL (General) (Certificate, Associate)

College of DuPage, Glen Ellyn, IL (General) (Certificate)

College of DuPage, Glen Ellyn, IL (Vascular) (Certificate)
Forsyth Technical Community College, Winston-Salem, NC (General) (Associate)

University of Rio Grande / Rio Grande Community College, Rio Grande, OH (General) (Associate)


Sanford Brown Institute, New York, NY (General) (Certificate)




DeVry University - with Polysomnography Add-on, North Brunswick, NY (Associate)




Blinn College, Bryan, TX (Diploma, Certificate)

Central Texas College, Killeen, TX (Certificate, Associate)

Faulkner State Community College, Bay Minette, AL (Certificate, Associate)

Louisiana State University Fire & Emergency Training Institute, Baton Rouge, LA (Certificate)
Mesa State College, Grand Junction, CO (Certificate, Associate)

Metropolitan Community College - Omaha, Omaha, NE (Associate)
National College of Technical Instruction - San Diego, San Diego, CA (Certificate, Associate)

Temple College, Temple, TX (Certificate, Associate)




Carrington College California - Pleasant Hill, Pleasant Hill, CA (Certificate)


Harford Community College, Bel Air, MD (Certificate) 

Transfer of Sponsorship

Chattahoochee Technical College, Acworth, GA (Diploma)

Chattahoochee Technical College, Austell, GA (Diploma)

Chattahoochee Technical College, Jasper, GA (Diploma)




The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD (Masters)




Mercy College of Health Sciences, Des Moines, IA (Certificate)



Community Blood Center, Dayton, OH (Certificate)


Blood Systems Laboratories, Tempe, AZ (Certificate)




Concorde Career Institute-Portland, Portland, OR (Diploma)


Transfer of Sponsorship

Medical Education and Training Campus, Ft. Sam Houston, TX (Diploma)