Thanks to great networking efforts, especially from Nikki Goodale OT (an OT in Texas who lives north of the impact area), we are beginning to identify therapists who have been personally and directly impacted by the hurricane.
Wendy McAnally OT is the co-owner of the preschool/clinic New Horizons. Desiree Mataya PT and Tricia Weger ST are co workers. The preschool is located in Dickinson, Texas just south of Houston, one of the most devastated areas. With 2-3 feet of water, they have no idea of the extent of the damage to the building and their equipment. Of course, none of the therapists at working at this moment, and there is no timetable for when they will be able to return to the school.
Kristen Murphy,OT works for River Kids Texas a pediatric home health company that serves a large area of Houston and surrounding areas. One of the company’s owners is also an OT. Kristen was displaced and rescued by boat from her home and is now first able to go back and see the damage. She gets paid per home health visit and is losing wages due to being out of work, displaced and her patients being displaced with flooded homes. Alexis Belk, PTA at RiverKids, also was displaced from her apartment, and rescued by boat due to flooding., lost 2 cars, and does not know when viable employment in home health will again be an option due to widespread displacement of her case load.
We anticipate that there will be many other therapists who own practices or work for practices that have been impacted, have homes that have been destroyed or damaged, etc. No matter how much FEMA or other funds come to be, distribution takes time, and has often proven not to cover all the losses these therapists have or will sustain.
A Plumfund has been set up for these therapists. We will continue to add therapists in need from damages/ losses sustained by Hurricane Harvey. To donate
In addition, more than one therapist brought this longtime TEXAS group to my attention: Apparently it is all volunteer run, many therapists are involved, and they need $$$ and gently used DME for the Texas communities they serve. THEY NEED WHEELCHAIRS NOW!!! Here is their website and how you can donate to them.
If anyone hears of a therapist that should be included, please email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks in advance.
Iris ( Kimberg, MS PT OTR)