Rehab Engineers

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Rehabilitation Engineers can be roughly classified in three categories:

Clinical Rehabilitation Engineers.  These practitioners function as part of the comprehensive clinical rehabilitation team, targeting areas such as seating & positioning, the provision of assistive technologies ranging from wheelchairs to augmentative communication devices, and custom-designed devices.  Compared to the other rehab specialties (e.g., therapists), the number of practicing rehabilitation engineers is relatively small (about 500 in the US).  The primary society for these professionals in RESNA.  The Rehabilitation Engineering professional specialty group (PSG) at RESNA has been actively involved in considering certification for this group of specialists (Professional Engineers; Assistive Technology Practitioners).

Rehabilitation Bioengineering Researchers/Academics.  Rehabilitation exists as a field because biological structures are alive -- they adapt as a function of how they are used, etc.  Additionally, it is well recognized that the human-technology interfaces are challenging, and this impacts on the design and provision of assistive technologies.  There are many areas of rehabilitation science and engineering that are largely unexplored, ranging from basic understanding of optimal healing processes to neuromotor control strategies that underlie human movement.  Examples of professionals within this area include 5 of the core faculty within our Department (Drs. Gerald Harris, Robert Scheidt, Brian Schmit, M. Barbara Silver-Thorn, Jack Winters).  

Engineers in Industry Involved in Rehab Products.  These professionals generally fall into two categories: R&D or sales. There are a wide variety of rehabilitation technologies, with well over 10,000 on the market.

 

Copyright by Jack Winters.
For problems or questions regarding this web contact Jack Winters.
Last updated: January 16, 2001.