In October, I was honored to have been one of 80 occupational therapy stakeholders invited to participate in AOTA's Vision 2025 Summit in National Harbor, MD. The participant list included current and past AOTA leaders; visionary clinicians, educators, and researchers; and healthcare advocates from many sectors of the economy. The process of crafting Vision 2025 has been underway for some time now. AOTA has conducted interviews with senior leaders, surveys of OT members and non-members, and in-person meetings with key stakeholder groups such as the Academic Leadership Council and Special Interest Section Council. Preparation for the Summit required review of these data, substantial reading (Thanks Maureen;), and some reflection on the future of OT
The two-day Summit was structured to provide a balance of large-group and breakout opportunities. Day one breakouts were designed so that each group included diverse perspectives. My group included AOTA SISC Chair Donna Costa, Brandy Archie, Carolyn Sithong, Izel Obermeyer, AOTA VP Shawn Phipps, AOTA COO Chris Bluhm, Deborah Lieberman from AOTA, CAOT Executive Director Janet Craik, and Garry Pezzano. Together, we reviewed the successes of the Centennial Vision and outlined factors that the new vision should address. As reporter for my breakout, I shared our work with the larger group. My Summit peers will remember Jay's emphasis on "The" Ohio State University.
Day two breakouts were designed around primary practice areas such as pediatrics, adults, aging, and education. I was assigned to the "research" group, which included Carolyn Baum, Natalie Leland, Beth Skidmore, Tim Wolf, Florence Clark, Wendy Coster, Sharmila Sandhu from AOTA, AOTF Executive Director Scott Campbell, AOTA Chief Science & Academic Officer Neil Harvison, Ann Deutsch, and AOTA Executive Director Fred Somers. Together we developed a draft Vision statement, each person contributing in significant ways. Our statement read, "Occupational therapy is an essential and influential profession that is highly valued for its unique focus on everyday living and its proven effectiveness for improving health and well-being." Other groups reported back by reading draft statements and sharing areas for emphasis. This is an exciting time in the history of occupational therapy and I am honored to have played a small part in it. Keep your eyes open this spring, as AOTA is planning to unveil the final Vision 2025 statement at conference in April.