Assistive technology device development: moving from design to market ready using an online course to advance the knowledge and understanding of product development for occupational therapy practitioners
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During an intervention, occupational therapy practitioners (OTPs) can customize it by creating a novel product adaptation. Such adaptive products help individuals to participate fully in occupations and activities (AOTA), 2016a). Potentially, the need for the adaptive product could be greater than the one individual for whom it was intentionally designed. This doctoral project investigates the impact of OTP designed products not getting to market, the factors that contribute to this limitation, and propose an online course to address the problem. The pathway of the AquaEve urinal becoming a population application is used as a case example. The Assistive Technology Device Development: Moving from design to market ready (AT to Market) course will be implemented as a pilot course. The goal of this five-module course is to guide OTPs to achieve milestones on the path to bringing a novel AT product to market. The creation of a comparison product chart, a narrative description of the problem and solution, achievement of a working prototype, and the creation of a business plan are the measurable outcomes of this course. This doctoral project describes the contributing factors to the course including funding, outcomes research, and dissemination plans due to their contribution to the goal of the viability of the AT to Market course as a repeatable offering. The Assistive Technology Device Development: Moving From Design to Market Ready course will guide OTPs through the innovative and entrepreneurial steps to contribute to the emerging technology trend and advance the quality of health care through the development of healthcare enhancing products extending from their client creations.