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KMA Remarketing Supports Campus OTA Program
December 20, 2013
DuBOIS Faculty in the Penn State DuBois Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) program are now even better equipped to provide the highest possible quality in education for their students, thanks to some new equipment donated by a local company. KMA Remarketing, a DuBois-based company that buys, refurbishes and sells pre-owned medical equipment recently donated $4,200 worth of apparatus to the campus OTA program, which students will use during their laboratory exercises.

Specifically, KMA donated an electric hospital bed for use in bed mobility training and transfer training, during which students learn how to safely instruct and assist clients in transferring into and out of bed. The company also donated an electronic vital signs monitor, which will be used to practice monitoring of pulse and blood pressure of clients, as well as two rolling storage containers with drawers that are used to organize adaptive equipment for students' use such as low vision kits, arthritis kits, splinting kits, and more.

The training students receive in the OTA associate degree program while using such equipment will prepare them to work with a licensed occupational therapist and administer therapy to people who have been injured, or suffer from debilitating illnesses, and help them to learn to perform everyday tasks on their own.

"Updated equipment is necessary for instructional purposes as students will see similar equipment when they go to clinics for fieldwork," said director of the Penn State DuBois OTA Program LuAnn Demi. "The gift of newer medical equipment to be used by our students is deeply appreciated.  Our students are able to practice techniques they will use with clients using state of the art equipment.  We would not have had this opportunity without the generosity of KMA Remarketing; we are truly grateful for their role in helping to update the OTA program."

In business for 20 years, KMA is a world leader in the purchase and sale of pre-owned medical equipment. The company buys equipment that is no longer in use by hospitals or other medical facilities, and runs those items through rigorous inspection and testing to determine if each piece is still in good working order. Those that don't pass the test are discarded, while those that do pass are repaired or refurbished accordingly, and put on the market to lead a second life in the medical care industry.

"We sell domestically and to 60 countries internationally. We sell equipment in an "as is" condition, for parts or for equipment not requiring refurbishment such as a stainless steel table, all the way to completely refurbished, patient ready, with a warranty," explained KMA President and CEO Dana Smith. He continued, "We have a department equipped with paint booths, sandblast booth, electrical shop, upholstery shop and various testing and repair equipment. We are staffed with some highly skilled technicians including several biomedical engineering technicians who are graduates of the Penn State New Kensington Program. We provide routine and emergent repair services for medical facilities, de-installation and re-installation services, and of course our refurbishment program."

Smith earned a bachelor's degree in Health and Physical Education from Penn State in 1979, and attended Penn State DuBois while working toward that degree. He also spent time working in the emergency medical field. These combined live experiences made him want to give to the campus OTA Program. 

"My heart does and always has belonged to Penn State. Simply put, I bleed blue and white," Smith said, explaining his desire to support the Penn State DuBois program, but offering more insight into his reasons for backing medical professionals. He explained, "I'll never forget my paramedic training and my very first serious call by myself as a medic. During my training we shared one IV bag to "spike" and learn how to do an IV set up. We had manikins that, you knew right where to put the needle because you could see all the previous marks on it. When I was on that first call I would have given a month's pay to have had more hands-on experience with the equipment. My belief is that the students in the OTA program would probably benefit greatly from the equipment donated by KMA by getting that hands-on experience."

Students who successfully complete the OTA Program have promising career opportunities, as well. Monster.com has ranked the position of occupational therapy assistant as one of the 10 best jobs you can get with an associate degree. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected that job opportunities for occupational therapy assistants will increase by 43 percent between 2010 and 2020. 

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