occupational therapy

LIH Olivia’s Place Beijing in the Community

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Between July and September, LIH Olivia’s Place Beijing was invited to attend numerous events in the community to provide training and information for parents, teachers, and healthcare professionals.

Lectures on Child Development at Hongkong Clinic & BIBS

Milind HK ClinicOn July 27, Milind Sonawane,  Speech-Language Therapy Lead at LIH Olivia’s Place Beijing, offered a lecture to clinicians at Beijing’s Hongkong Clinic on the topic of Child Development and Pediatric Therapy. The event served as the foundation for further cooperation between LIH Healthcare and Hongkong Clinic in Beijing to continue the establishment of early screening and intervention treatment of child developmental disorders.

Milind shared his professional knowledge and experience, and discussed the future direction of pediatric therapy with clinicians in attendance. First, he introduced the general pattern of child motor development. He also talked about early “red flags” that signal concern in a child’s motor development. Through case review, Milind explained how an interdisciplinary team ( for example, including physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and psychology) consultation) conducts a comprehensive and subsequently provides therapy services through a treatment plan. Attendees asked a lot of questions and participated in active discussion, especially on topics like interdisciplinary evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment, as well as the various therapeutic models used across countries.

This event was a tremendous success. Through exchange of experience and knowledge, LIH Olivia’s Place supports clinicians to evaluation and treat child behavior and developmental concerns.

Milind BIBSOn August 15, Mr. Sonawane lectured on child development for more than 70 teachers at Beanstalk International Bilingual School. He talked about children’s development at different stages, including the areas of gross motor, fine motor, social, cognition, and speech and language. He emphasized the significance of focusing on child development, as well as measures to take when there are “red flags” signaling concern. Teachers gained approaches to use as they identify potential problems with a student’s development.

Although each child develops at their own pace, it is possible to see what is within the range of “typical” and we look to “developmental milestones,” such as saying first words, crawling, walking, or even the age a child rides a bike the first time. When a one-year-old is not able to cruise by holding onto furniture or use a pincer grasp to pick up objects, or a three year old is lacks the basic skills to help put on clothes or climb stairs independently, these are examples of situations when early intervention may be greatly beneficial.

As an expert in speech and language, Milind also gave teachers advice on how to help children who have language delays. He explained that, when a child cannot understand your instructions or is having difficulty producing language, or cannot produce sound, it is necessary to consider the child’s ability to think, whether they have a solid language foundation in a specific language, their oral motor skills, their ability to hear and understand, and whether they need more time to answer questions. These observations will help a teacher to understand the child’s level of ability and whether to seek further assistance. Read more

Experts Gather for Silk Road Child Health Forum

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Xian 1On 6-9 July, the Silk Road International Forum for Child Health 2017 was held in Xi’an by the Second Affiliated Hospital of Xi’an Jiaotong University and the Chinese Journal of Child Health Care. Nearly 500 experts in domestic and international pediatrics and health care participated in this meeting. A broad range of pediatric topics including early development, mental health, nutrition, growth and development, high risk infants, children with cerebral palsy, digestive health and allergic disorders, were discussed.

Dr. Susan Cadzow ( M.B.B.S., F.R.A.C.P., Australia, Chief of Behavioral and Developmental Pediatrics for LIH Oliva’s Place Clinics (a division of LIH Healthcare) and Kristi Troutman ((OTR/L, US), also with LIH Olivia’s Place, were invited and presented on “A Multidisciplinary Approach to Autism Diagnosis” and “What is Pediatric Occupational Therapy” respectively.
LIH Oliva’s Place Clinics, with rich resources in international healthcare, endeavors to build academic exchange with domestic medical institutes and is committed to the development of behavioral and developmental pediatrics and pediatric rehabilitation in China.

Congratulations on the success of the Silk Road International Forum for Child Health 2017!

LIH Healthcare Pediatric Specialists Present at Children’s Healthcare Forum

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The “Forum on Current Topics in Caring for Children -Nutrition, Development & Parenting” was held at Shenzhen Bao An Maternity and Children’s Hospital on 14 May. Many well-known professors and international and local supervising physicians were invited to this forum, the theme of children’s health care issues. Dr. Susan Cadzow, Director of Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics for LIH Healthcare and Kristi Troutman, Occupational Therapist and Clinical Manager of LIH Olivia’s Place Shenzhen, both presented at the event.

Baoan 1Dr.Susan Cadzow is an Australian-registered pediatrician and also a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians. She has previously worked at Shanghai United Family Hospital and Royal Children’s Hospital, Brisbane. She is now the Director of Developmental Behavioral Pediatrics at LIH Healthcare.
First, Dr. Cadzow explained what a multi-disciplinary team model is and why it is necessary in the diagnosis of autism. Due to complexity in diagnosis of autism and the similarity of symptoms to many other conditions, precise diagnosis requires the engagement of a team which may include a child’s doctor andoccupational therapy, physical therapy, psychological consultation, speech-language therapy, Learning support, and behavioral therapy.
Next, Dr. Cadzow explained in detail the goal of diagnostic assessment. At the end of the presentation, she expressed that she is looking forward to the further development in specialized services for treatment of autism for children and multi-disciplinary assessment team to enable early diagnosis and early intervention in China, as well as further understanding of practitioners on genetic conditions.

Kristi Troutman, LIH Olivia's Place Clinical Manager, presenting on "Occupational Therapy and Developmental-Behavioral Disorders"

Kristi Troutman, LIH Olivia’s Place Clinical Manager, presenting on “Occupational Therapy and Developmental-Behavioral Disorders”

Kristi Troutman, OTR/L, Clinical Manager at LIH Olivia’s Place Shenzhen, has more than 25 years of occupational therapy experience; she has worked with children with a variety of diagnoses, including autism, ADHD, cerebral palsy, visual impairment, Angleman Syndrome, Noonan Syndrome, selective mutism, and developmental delay.

In her speech, she explained the concept and types of pediatric occupational therapy, and advocated the idea that “Family engagement is Essential in OT”- children, peers, family members, and adults work together on occupational activities such as feeding and eating, caregiver-child interaction in play, dressing, grooming, and personal hygiene. This joint effort is very important to infants, toddlers, children, and their families.

She put emphasis on the significance of occupational therapy, exemplified by how occupational therapy activities are designed to fit for the needs of every single child’s development. Her speech won applause from the audience from time to time, and was received very warmly. In the end, Ms. Troutman explained that the goal of treatment should be varied in terms of each individual, taking consideration of education at home and school, and also highlighted that treatment should be home-centered as appropriate.

Clinician Profile: Occupational Therapist Eva Ma

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Eva Ma, Occupational Therapist, celebrates Children's Day with Charissa, a former client

Eva Ma, Occupational Therapist, celebrates Children’s Day with Charissa, a former client

Eva Ma is an Occupational Therapist at LIH Olivia’s Place in Beijing.

Eva is an occupational therapist from the US, with more than 20 years of experience in pediatric occupational therapy. She holds a BS in Occupational Therapy from the University of Southern California. Her extensive experience covers early childhood education programs for 3-5 year olds and services for pre-kindergarten through middle school children with disabilities. She has provided interventions in home and day care settings, as well as special education and general education classrooms. Eva has dedicated time to projects around the world for equipment fitting and provisions for children with physical disabilities. She speaks English and Cantonese.




How long have you been in China?

I have been in Beijing, China since August of 2015.


Why did you choose to work at LIH Olivia’s Place?

I was looking for a place to work and volunteer in a developing country.


Why did you choose your field?

I was on a student visa studying in America, I needed to study and become a professional, which would allow me to stay in America after graduation. I was inclined to go to a helping profession. I wanted to study in a field that I can help the whole person acros6s the life span. I came across the field of occupational therapy, which was one of the skills in need in America.

What are some of the most rewarding experiences you have had in your chose profession? I have worked with many different clients in different settings for almost 27 years. I have volunteered and worked in many developing countries. I am grateful that I have a long list of very rewarding experiences. It is priceless.

  • The ability to help a child with spinal bifida who was not able to walk to get a proper seating and mobility base so that he could sit up and be vertical.
  • A child who used to be scared of movement and looked at me with an attentive gaze as an expression of joy as he slid down a slide.
  • A set of parents reported that they could go out and dine in a restaurant as their child who has ASD tolerated the light and the sound.
  • An older man who could lift his arm actively as he was recovering from a stroke. Helping an older woman who has cerebral palsy to taste some ice cream after not being able to eat by mouth for many years.
  • I have taught seminars in North America. It was so exciting when fellow therapists wrote back and said that they tried what I taught them and it worked.


What’s your favorite thing about living in China?

I am learning to speak Mandarin Chinese and to practice writing both simplified and traditional Chinese. I get to emerge in this Chinese culture.


What would you like to be doing in 5 years’ time?

Doing the same thing I am doing… lying on the floor putting together 9-piece puzzle pieces with a 5-year-old kindergartener, pushing through an obstacle course on a scooter board with a 3-year-old preschooler, putting up the pony swing for a 10-year- old….  playing with children and making a good living.

Providing Community Based Training in ZhengZhou

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ZICW2 (2)Excerpts from an email from Teacher Liu of ZhengZhou Institute for Children’s Welfare (ZICW), dated 29 April 2016:





Through the previous 3 trainings given by Ms. Anna, we have great progress on specialized knowledge and operative skills. We are also encouraged by Anna’s high enthusiasm for the work and her personal charisma. We appreciated Anna’s contributions.

Every time Anna arrived in the middle of the night and started the training in the early morning the 2nd day of her arrival; she did not take rest at noon and worked very hard. I thank for your selfless help and encouragement on behalf of our institute and 850 children.



ZICW1 (2)Since last October, Anna Tan Pascual, Occupational Therapy Team Lead at LIH Olivia’s Place Shanghai, has traveled to ZICW once a season to train their teachers. Using her weekends, Anna departs for Zhengzhou on a Thursday evening, provides training on Friday and Saturday, and returns to Shanghai on Saturday evening. She has given training on the role of occupational therapists and how OT’s work, developing fine motor skills in children, and sensory processing systems and disorders. She has also shared her extensive knowledge of working with blind and low-vision children. In addition, there have been opportunities to provide assessment and therapy demonstrations for the Zhengzhou team. In between two face to face workshop, Anna arranged an online video Question & Answer session. Teachers at ZICW sent their questions first, for Anna to review. Anna emailed replies for their staff to review and offered further discussion in the online Q&A. Anna’s efforts were supported by a bilingual LIH Olivia’s Place Communications Team.


ZICW3 (2)
This is the example of LIH Olivia’s Place education outreach for a community-based organization. We share ZICW’s vision of making China a great place for children. If your organization’s mission is to serve children with developmental or rehabilitative needs, we are also happy to discuss partnerships to provide a customized program to meet your needs.


Clinician Profile: Anna Tan Pascual, Shanghai Occupational Therapy Lead

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Anna Tan Pascual, Shanghai Occupational Therapy Lead

Anna Tan Pascual, Shanghai Occupational Therapy Lead

Anna is a registered occupational therapist in the Philippines and Australia. She has a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy and Master of Rehabilitation Sciences, both from the University of the Philippines. In her more than 20 year career, she has worked in a wide range of pediatric settings. Anna’s clinical interests include helping children meet school and classroom demands, especially handwriting, as well as working with children who are blind or have low vision. She also invests time training local therapists and educators, believing that the knowledge and skills she imparts will benefit many children in China. Anna speaks English, Filipino, Fookien, and Mandarin.


How long have you been in China?

My husband, two children, and I moved to China in July 2014. Prior to that, we were here a few times doing volunteer work, such as in the earthquake-hit Sichuan province.

Why did you choose to work at LIH Olivia’s Place?

When we visited Shanghai in 2012, we contacted Olivia’s Place and were impressed with the vision of not only providing quality care, but to extend the same quality of services to local kids.  It is exciting to be part of a team that is even now changing the landscape of therapy services in China.

Why did you choose your field?

Anna provides a demonstration in 2014 at Xinhua Hospital.

Anna provides a demonstration in 2014 at Xinhua Hospital.

My brother told me occupational therapy is matching people to their jobs! I blindly applied for it and almost changed my course midway through, but then fell in love with the profession once we started seeing clients in the hospitals. I always wanted to work with people and being an OT has been so fulfilling. I enjoy being with the kids, and the chance to impact the lives of families is so rewarding.

What are some of the most rewarding experiences you have had in your chosen profession?

In China, it has been the opportunity to work with welfare centers, particularly in one province where an institution serves 900 kids. I would like to work with orphans more, and it is nice to know my job in LIH Olivia’s Place will allow me these opportunities.

What’s your favorite thing about living in China or working at LIH Olivia’s Place?

Being immersed in the Chinese culture, especially for my children. I like that living here affords our family to be up close and personal to the Chinese way of life – because growing up Chinese in the Philippines gave us a different type of culture, compared to the “real stuff” here in China (Anna’s ancestors left Fujian to go to the Philippines five generations ago).  Being in Shanghai also allows us to know people from many different nationalities, the same thing I like about working at LIH Olivia’s Place. People are always so interesting to talk to because there’s so much to learn from them!

What would you like to be doing in 5 years’ time?

At that point our children will be nearing university age, so I would like to see my husband and myself working in other parts of China, hopefully working mostly with orphans. I can definitely see myself working as an OT till I am old and gray!

USC Delegation Visits LIH Olivia’s Place Beijing

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USC Visit 5 USC Visit 3On November 5, 2015, a delegation from the Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Sciences and Occupational Therapy at University of Southern California led by the Chair of the Division, Dr. Florence Clark visited LIH Olivia’s Place’s Beijing clinic. The LIH Olivia’s Place team shared with the delegation about our clinical occupational therapy services, our programs providing technical support and training to university faculty in related fields in China, and our work developing new clinical education training programs for Chinese therapists. Dr. Clark provided an introduction to her Division and their coming work in China to support the development of occupational sciences and occupational therapy here. USC has received a grant from the Chan family of US$20 million to help them develop their top-ranked program further and foster the development of occupational therapy in China.

USC Visit 2


Giving…and Getting Hope in Shanxi Province

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by Sorcha Ni Chadhain, Occupational Therapist, Eliott's Corner, Beijing

by Sorcha Ni Chadhain, Occupational Therapist, Eliott’s Corner, Beijing

YanYan slowly raised his head; there was a hint of something in his face…..and then it came; a wonderful, joyful smile and giggle straight from the belly! One quick connection of the eyes and the game started over. And that was it. That fleeting moment was enough to make us sure our visit was worthwhile. Thankfully there were many moments just like it throughout an intense but wonderful weekend spent in an orphanage in Shanxi province.

We are two occupational therapists working at Eliott’s Corner in Beijing. We first made a visit to this orphanage in September 2014. We were so taken with the children, the carers, and the great work being undertaken that it took little convincing to get us back on that train again 3 months later in December and again most recently in May 2015. The purpose of our visits have a few layers!

and by Kristi Troutman, Lead Occupational Therapist, Eliott's Corner, Beijing

and by Kristi Troutman, Lead Occupational Therapist, Eliott’s Corner, Beijing

First and foremost, we are there to meet the children and their carers. Many of the children in this facility have various levels of disability and ability. Their carers, who love them dearly, have little training in providing specific ‘therapeutic’ interventions to develop these children’s skills and abilities. They are somewhat lucky in terms of the unique set-up, which allows one carer to care specifically for three children. Carers of course share duties and help each other out, but this means they have a constant, long-term ‘mama’ who feeds them, bathes them, and shares a room with them. For us, this allows a unique opportunity to train a carer to work on improving a particular skill for each child, be that developing eye-contact, learning colors, or just showing enjoyment.

Finding ways to actually provide training that works, to assess children in these environments and provide input that is sustainable after you get back on the train is often the greatest challenge in working with orphanages and other institutions. The best intentions in the world don’t always lead to sustainable change or lasting impact. But one of the factors that makes this place so special to work in, is the unyielding determination of the leaders and management to get the best out of life and provide the best out of life for these children. This means support, encouragement, and expectations for the carers, that they will have time, resources, and training provided so they can give ‘therapy’ on a daily basis for their kids, and see them change and grow over time.

For our part, this means an intense, whirlwind of a weekend. We have faced this challenge in a number of different ways each time we have visited. We have provided assessment, which is basically a process of meeting each child, talking to their carer about their challenges, and figuring out what particular skill or challenge to target, that if improved, would make a difference in that child’s life.

We turn this into a written goal. A goal that can be measured, so that when the child does make a change, it can actually be ‘counted’, written down, and shown to the world! This gives the carers hope, it shows leaders that intervention works, and it shows the world that these kids have potential, much more than they have often been given credit for in their short lives.

We also help to write care plans. These will stay with the children and remind the carers of various ideas and tips that can help them work with the child. It could be a simple pointer like; “My muscles are a little weak. Please help me to sit in a supportive chair when you want me to sit and use my hands.” With these ideas readily available to the carer, they soon learn to provide the best learning opportunities for the kids throughout their day.

Lastly, we try to provide specific training. We show each carer what we want them to work on for their kids and show them how to elicit the responses we are looking for. In YanYan’s case, he seems so detached from the world, uninterested in any toys, unresponsive to words, sounds, touch. But we discovered a little glimmer in him. Plopped up onto a huge therapy ball, nearly bigger than himself, we bounce him around….slowly at first to gauge his reaction….as predicted, it wasn’t much. Then a little faster and a little higher, add in a lively nursery song and suddenly his head is up, he seems alive! So we stop (counter-intuitive though it may seem)…….and we wait……and then we wait a little more…….and just as described, we eventually get it. The smile, the eye contact, the laugh. And that means we have him! He now knows he must use eye contact to show us he wants more, we now know something that motivates him! This is the key for YanYan! This gives him a reason to communicate, something to ask for, to respond to, to share! Showing his carers that there is something in there, and we just need to have the patience and persistence to find it, that is the goal.

All of these children, no matter their ability, their disability, their background, their future, they all have something to give us…..we just need to give first.

At the request of the orphanage, no identifying information has been included in this post.

Olivia’s Place Speaks at Xinhua Hospital Conference

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Lis Ringrose, Physiotherapist and Olivia's Place Clinical Director, speaks on 24 Hour Postural Care at Xinhua Hospital.

Lis Ringrose, Physiotherapist and Olivia’s Place Clinical Director, speaks on 24 Hour Postural Care at Xinhua Hospital.


Anna Tan Pascual, Lead Occupational Therapist, provides a demonstration for participants.

Anna Tan Pascual, Lead Occupational Therapist, provides a demonstration for participants.

Olivia’s Place has been honored to receive a number of invitations of late to speak at academic conferences and training events around China. In September, Dr. Du Qing, the Chief Physician of Shanghai’s renowned Xinhua Hospital, invited Lis Ringrose, Clinical Director/Physiotherapist, and Anna Tan Pascual, Lead Occupational Therapist (Shanghai), and Nelson Chow, Founder/President to speak at a conference on rehabilitation medicine at Xinhua. Nelson shared with experts from all over China about the mission of Olivia’s Place and work we have been doing to help build up the fields of pediatric therapy in China. Lis spoke about 24 hour postural management and Anna spoke about evaluation and treatment of upper limbs for children.  We are delighted to have these opportunities to fulfill our mission of bringing high quality pediatric therapy to China.