“CHT” OR “Certified Hand Therapist”, can be a “Physical Therapist (PT-DPT)”, or an “Occupational Therapist (OT/OTR)”, with extensive hands-on experience of at least 4000 hours, in treating hand injuries and impairments. They also need to be Licensed Physical or Occupational Therapists, practicing in the United States for at least 5 years.
When all the stringent pre-conditions are met, the therapist will then need to take a Board Examination conducted by HTCC Board. Upon passing the test, the community has a new Certified Hand Therapist. He or she can then provide specialized Hand Therapy services to all patients with hand trauma or injury.
Hand therapy is caring for wounded and disabled hands in a very specialized way. The goal is to make hands better in function as well as in appearance. Hand is probably the third most important part of human body after the heart that drives us and the brain the guides us.
We as human beings, interact with our environment through our hands and make things happen in our professional and personal life. Hands perform millions of functions for us every day, without making us even think about it! Exactly the reason why hands are so intricate and complicated. Compromise of hand function due to injury or impairment can reduce our interaction with the world significantly affecting our psycho-social life Certified Hand Therapist’s know how to take care of wounded and disabled hands due to possession of extensive knowledge and experience in treating hand injuries-impairments. CHT’s are very good in timely interventions, which is critical in Hand rehabilitation. They are well aware of the psycho-social effects of hand injuries and are very good in establishing a rapport with the patient. That bond of trust they develop with the patient and family, is the most important part in successful hand rehabilitation. They know all the diagnoses, conditions and the clinical presentation.
They also have the ability to fabricate multiple creative, static and dynamic splints-orthoses as needed, to regain-retain range of motion and hand functions. They will either make their own educated decision to treat the problem in a certain way or they will communicate with the referring physician-surgeon and discuss about the course of intervention, if unsure! Close interaction between the therapist and the surgeon is essential to formulate and execute a successful treatment plan for the patients. Loss of hand functions is a devastating blow to any human being and need to be taken seriously. Certified hand therapists will help you to regain your hand functions, making you happy and being able to interact with your environment again.