This week’s OISI Staff Spotlight features Kim Peters, Occupational Therapist, and Certified Hand Therapist
1. How long have you been with OISI?
I started working here at OISI in April of 2004. I am an occupational therapist as a Certified Hand Therapist. In fact, I am the only CHT in the Southern IL area, and receive referrals from MDs all over St. Louis, Illinois, Mayo Clinic, and Kentucky as the physicians look up a database to ensure their patients see a CHT to protect their surgery.
FUN FACT: A CHT is a post-graduate certification where the therapist either a PT or OT must work 5 years in the field of upper extremity orthopaedics and then sit for a specialized board/test. Continuing education is specific for hand and upper extremity training and the therapist needs to be aware of surgical procedures and protocols to help the surgeon with patient education and ensure the surgery is successful in producing a functional hand/extremity for daily use. The physicians choose a CHT as they trust that this post graduate specialist is aware of precautions etc, the general therapist may not be aware of the specifics of progression of protocols.
2. Favorite part of your job?
My favorite part of my job is seeing patients return to the use of their hand with their daily jobs and hobbies. We take for granted how much we use a finger/wrist/ nondominant hand until we can not use it anymore. I enjoy patient education and helping them know what to expect in their recovery and helping them achieve it. I also love making splints and creating items to help my patients do things that they can not at the time due to their injury.
3. What gets you out of bed in the morning?
Umm. That’s easy! Unsweet tea. That’s my go-to drink I have at all times and all of my patients are aware that is all I drink all day.
4. People would be surprised if they knew what about you?
I’m very active in my children’s lives and am an active member of both the boy scouts and girl scouts. My son is working towards Eagle and I have helped his journey as a Den Leader since he was in first grade (the last 8 years!).
I love all holidays, love to travel, and am gone most weekends with my daughter’s competitive dance teams and my sons competitive cheer and gym meets.
5. What is your favorite thing to do in Southern IL?
I actually like to hike with the Scouts. I love Pine Ridge campgrounds, which is a boy scout site. Recently, they opened a new trail that is gorgeous and surrounds Little Grassy Lake. My favorite hidden trail would be Bell Smith Springs, as there is a great swimming hole to discover– but way too many snakes. I also love to go to anything “holiday” in the area — pumpkin patches, Christmas craft shows, musicals, etc. My favorite concert in Southern IL is Mark Schultz, who comes to Marion yearly when he can. He is an amazing Christian artist whose music is breathtaking.
I love crafts. I make many items including the OI shirts I wear in the department. I enjoy embroidery, crafting, painting the windows for all the holidays in the department, and started making glitter tumblers. I will try any craft or Pinterest item at least once. My good friend who worked here some years ago and I have had a Christmas Pinterest Gift Exchange for more than 10 years, whether it’s amazing fails or we pick a craft and create it for each other.