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Philadelphia, Pa - Magee Rehabilitation Hospital - a U.S. News & World Report Best Hospital for physical rehabilitation - has created a training video, posters and brochures to help Iraqi citizens learn to properly use wheelchairs.

Magee was asked to create the training materials by Benjamin Kenion, a Captain in the U.S. Army who is in Iraq working with the Babil Provincial Reconstruction Team. Because of his experience as an occupational therapist at Magee, Kenion realized the need for such materials when working with the Babil Regional Rehabilitation Center, which treats 250 patients a day. Latter Day Saints (LDS) Philanthropies also agreed to send two thousand brand new wheelchairs to Kenion and his team and both the training materials and the wheelchairs were delivered earlier this month.

The video and materials, which cover transfers, elevations, pressure relief, and basic wheelchair assessment, were produced in both English and Arabic to make them more versatile and user friendly. Global Arena in Philadelphia was hired for the translation.

"There is nothing like this in Iraq," said Dr. Sahir Jaleel Rashid Hamad Al-Maamoury, the Director of Babil Regional Rehab Center about the training video and other materials. "And this is the first time that a rehabilitation hospital in Iraq has worked with one in the United States. Also, Iraq gets many donations, but most are not translated or translated properly, which makes them virtually useless."

But the video will serve more than just those with wheelchairs in Babil Province. Showing women working with patients will provide motivation for young women to pursue education in the rehabilitation field. A copy of the video was presented to the Human Organization for Democracy and Woman's Rights, a women's non governmental organization (NGO). Both the Iraqi Ministry of Health and LDS Philanthropies are also interested in using the educational material throughout all 5 rehabilitation centers in Iraq, as well as throughout the world.

"We are very proud to have been a party of this project," said Deb Kucera, Pt, MST at Magee who was instrumental in producing the materials. "Everything, from the brochures and posters, demonstrating proper wheelchair techniques in the video, even the narration were done by staff who donated their time and expertise. Also, were fortunate to have assistance from the video production department at Independence Blue Cross, and Flat World Productions who donated their talent and equipment to produce the video."

Magee Rehabilitation Hospital, founded in 1958, is a 96-bed specialty medical rehabilitation hospital providing physical and cognitive rehabilitation services. Magee’s flagship facility is located in Center City Philadelphia. In addition to the main campus that offers comprehensive services for spinal cord injury, brain injury, stroke, orthopedic replacement, amputation, pain management and work injury, Magee provides an expanding out-patient network serving the surrounding communities. In 1985, Magee’s brain injury rehabilitation program became the first in the nation to be accredited by the Commission on the Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities. Magee partnered with Jefferson Hospital to create one of the nation’s 14 federally designated centers for spinal cord injury rehabilitation. Magee has been rated one of America’s leading rehabilitation hospitals by U.S. News&World Report. Magee provides treatment to more than 5,000 individuals annually. Magee is authorized to treat wounded military personnel returning from war. Magee is not an Obligated Group Affiliate.
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