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Kirby Medical Center Celebrates Occupational Therapy Month

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  • Written By: Kirby Medical Center

April is Occupational Therapy Month, a time to celebrate the dedicated professionals who empower individuals to live life to the fullest. Occupational therapists help people of all ages overcome challenges and disabilities, enabling them to participate in meaningful activities and achieve their goals. Join us as we recognize the invaluable contributions of occupational therapists in promoting health, well-being, and independence in communities worldwide.

What is Occupational Therapy and why is it important? 

Occupational Therapy has so many ways to help patients. We are able to work with patients towards maintaining their independence in caring for themselves and in what they do at home. We work with a person’s upper extremities to gain strength, coordination of their movement, gain range of motion for functional use, and help adapt activities or their work for a person to remain as independent as possible. This type of independence may be in a different way than “ normal” but what’s important is someone is able to do that activities they want to do for themselves.

Who is Occupational Therapy for?

Occupational Therapy is ideal for persons who have challenges or limitations doing the things they want to do. For example, someone who has had a stroke still wants to garden. We talk about alternatives to a typical garden by using raised beds, a seat and perhaps different kinds of gardening tools. Someone with Arthritis has difficulty grasping items or grip and they want to continue to bake or do their hair. An OT would problem solve this and find different solutions or different types of brushes/ combs, to help with that activity.

Get to know our Occupational Therapy team:

Tonya Bowrey

"My name is Tonya Bowrey and I am an occupational therapist here at Kirby Medical Center. I have worked as an OT for over 30 yrs, 4 of those years here at KMC. I have always enjoyed working with people and helping them. I love the creative aspect of my job. The best part about my career is that I am able to work with people who I can help when they might be at a personal low in their health. I teach them and show them they can do things again, if even in a different way. A fun fact about me is for some unknown reason, I often walk around work humming or whistling. Then I challenge my co -workers to guess that tune."

Tara Lofrano

"My name is Tara Lofrano and I am a COTA/L at Kirby Medical Center. I have worked for 31 years in this profession and 13 years at KMC. I originally was exposed to OT when I had a splint made in High School. After talking with the OT I was working with, I realized that OT was an inventive profession in which you have to think outside the box. This was immediately appealing to me as I have always had a creative mind. OT is important to me as a profession because I believe that maintaining independence is critical to an individual’s wellbeing and living their best life. Helping someone find an adaptation to be able to do a task that they have been unable to do, is very rewarding. A fun fact about me is that I can still do a cartwheel and do one every year, on or near my birthday. I anticipate continuing this annual goal until I break a hip."

To learn more about Occupational Therapy at Kirby Medical Center, visit: