Competency Guidelines

With robotic devices moving from the research labs into rehabilitation centers worldwide, there is a need for guidelines to ensure proper training and evaluation of therapist on the safe and effective use of these devices. Without proper training and knowledge on the safe and effective use of the device, safe behavior can be seriously compromised. Also, if improperly used, the device may not be used to its full potential and outcomes may be hindered. If robotic devices are to be truly incorporated into the daily therapeutic regimes of patients, they need to be extremely safe and their users need to be properly trained.

The following tool is a guide for identifying what types of training or documentation should be provided by companies that develop robotic devices and/or for end users that assess clinical competency.

Some robotic devices are more complex than others and require more in-depth training. This document is designed to identify training tools and the information that should be provided in those tools for the most complex devices. Some devices may not require all of these options. It is up to the manufacturer to determine which of these tools are appropriate for their devices.

The development of this tool was led by Kathaleen Brady, PT, NCS, Research Physical Therapist at the MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital in Washington, DC. This project was supported by the US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command under Award Numbers W81XWH-09-2-013 and W81XWH-11-1-0632.

For more information, contact:

Kathaleen Brady, PT, NCS
Research Physical Therapist
MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital

102 Irving Street, NW
Washington, DC 20010

Phone 202-877-1022
Fax 202-726-7521

Get Started

These pages are designed as a series of checklists you can use as an outline from which to customize your clinical training and competency tools. Use the menu on the left to navigate to each of the different tools and download the checklists and other supporting forms.

The Basics of Clinical Education

    As promoted by the Alliance of Continuing Medical Education (CME):
  • When developing a training tool, it is essential to consider its design and delivery.
  • Training should be controlled, objective-based and provide validated measures.
  • Curriculum system should be built on knowledge, skills and attitude.
  • Attitude is difficult to address. The question is, if a trainee is not attentive during a training session should they be permitted to use the device and how should this be handled.
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