Tuesday, September 10, 2013

IPMR Celebrates NEW Driving Simulator with Open House Event

The Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, IPMR, has been serving the central Illinois community with the IPMR Driving Evaluation and Training program for 22 years. IPMR is pleased to announce the addition of a new state of the art driving simulator. Over 200 driving scenarios and 39 lessons are possible on the new simulator. The new simulator was made possible with a gift to the Rehabilitation Foundation of IPMR from the Peoria Independent (Trusted Choice®) Insurance Agents Association. Enjoy tours, refreshments and prizes at the IPMR open house event at 6501 N Sheridan Rd on Friday, September 20 from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM. A ribbon cutting will take place at 10:00 AM.

The IPMR Driving Evaluation and Training program promotes safety on the road. Age, health issues, injury and disability may cause concerns about safe driving. A driver may experience vision difficulties, range of motion limitations, endurance limitations or delays in reaction time. A condition like ADHD may cause trouble with judgment and decision making. Driving evaluations using the driving simulator can test for difficulties and counsel drivers or young potential drivers about abilities and options. For individuals who are physically challenged, the program helps determine the proper adaptive controls. For some, strength or balance issues can be corrected through therapy to improve driving skills. Other times, a driving evaluation provides reassurance that it is time to retire from driving and explore other transportation options.

The state of the art driving simulator features lessons, driving scenarios and exercises delivered in a methodical building block approach. The driver must interact individually with unpredictable, multi-car traffic interaction exposing them to the complexity of driving on busy roadways. The evaluation tests for range of motion, strength, vision, cognition, and reaction time. A driving evaluation may be self-initiated or could be recommended by a physician, family member, school or employer. No matter who initiates or recommends the test, a physician referral is required to be tested.

“We are proud of how we have helped the community for over 20 years with the driving program at IPMR. We truly appreciate the gift from the Peoria Independent Insurance Agents that allowed us to purchase the new simulator. It really elevates the program and allows us to provide a higher level of testing and training for patients. Safe driving is currently being challenged with more complicated roadways, gadget distractions and higher speed limits. We are seeing an increased need for this program. We are proud to have the equipment and specialists to fill that need,” said Rick Zehr, President of IPMR. Sara Stomberg is an IPMR occupational therapist and leads the driving evaluations. “I’m so anxious to help more people with the powerful, interactive tools that are available on the new simulator. It allows me to accurately pinpoint deficiencies and direct improvement,” said Sara Stomberg, OT.

The Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation is a non-profit comprehensive rehabilitation facility. Since 1950, IPMR has continued their mission to improve function and quality of life in central Illinois. IPMR provides therapy in many outpatient locations including Bartonville, Chillicothe, Metamora, Morton, Pekin, Peoria and Washington. Visit the website at ipmr.org or call 309-692-8670.

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