NMEDA calls on UPitt

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Monday, November 30, 2020

TAMPA – The National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association has teamed up with the University of Pittsburgh’s Rehabilitation Science and Technology (RST) Department to manage its education and training programs. 

Amy Lane, an occupational therapist and certified driver rehabilitation specialist, who also manages the university’s Adaptive Driving Program, will oversee NMEDA’s programs, with at least 50% of her time devoted exclusively to NMEDA. 

“(Part one) was the University of Pittsburgh's RST is a globally known and respected entity in the automobility space,” said Danny Langfield, CEO. “Part two was Amy Lane. Mobility is a very small world and so to have an individual that is that well respected at an institution that is well respected – that was a combination that got my undivided attention." 

Previously, oversight of NMEDA’s education and training programs was an in-house position. It was left vacant in April, however, when Andy Ghillyer, the association’s director of education & training, passed away unexpectedly. 

There are a few disadvantages to not having an in-house position—“you lose a little bit of control of your program,” said Langfield—but the benefits are far greater, say Langfield and Lane. 

“We’ve got all these resources—me and other faculty and staff from our Department of Rehab Science and Technology—many who are involved with the continuing education program and they’re very experienced in developing quality, evidence-based continuing education,” said Lane. “If there's something that we don't know, we have other people and they’re ready to step up.”  

Top of mind in education and training right now, in the middle of a global pandemic, are logistics. Online education has always been a staple, but NMEDA has had to hit the pause button on its hands-on, technical trainings, like installing special adaptive seating, hand controls and restraint systems. 

“But in the interim, we are exploring new and creative methods of content delivery and hopefully that’s able to come to fruition,” said Lane.