Certified Occupational and Lymphedema Therapist Leslie Reagan recently obtained her Lymphology Association of North America (LANA) certification making her the only LANA certified therapist in the gorge.
This certification allows lymphedema patients to find therapists who have a minimum of 135 hours of training through a qualified school that has developed their lymphedema therapy skills.
Reagan completed 135 hours of training in 2007 to become a Certified Lymphedema Therapist (CLT). Since her certification she has focused on continuing her education on lymphedema and breast care rehabilitation therapies.
“Before you can be LANA certified you have to have practiced for a minimum of 100 hours. There's no way I would have been prepared to take the exam any sooner than this year. It was very difficult, and the years of experience played a big part in passing the exam,” said Reagan.
LANA certification isn’t required to practice as a Certified Lymphedema Therapist (CLT) but it does expand the number of patients you can see as a CLT. This is because some insurance companies will only cover treatments by a LANA certified practitioner. Until now many gorge residents have had to travel out to Portland in order to get treatments.
“In the last year, it came to my attention that the women who are insured by Oregon Health Plan (OHP) could not receive services from a CLT who didn't have LANA certification. The women who I had to turn away didn't have any other options for treatment except Portland,” said Reagan.
When Reagan’s not treating patients she’s a resource for caregivers and health care providers at MCMC. Specifically she has educated the MCMC lab staff about risk reduction. She’s also in constant communication with her fellow therapists about their patients with persistent swelling.
“Over the past 6 years I have had countless people looking for answers to why they're swelling. For them to know how to prevent lymphedema and how to treat other edema-related conditions and manage it long-term is the light at the end of the tunnel,” said Reagan.
Reagan also lends her expertise to students at the local community college who are just starting their medical careers.
“I have educated the CGCC medical assistants in lymphedema prevention from their standpoint: no blood pressures, no blood draws, no IVs on a side where lymph nodes have been removed,” said Reagan.
Reagan received her Master’s of Science Degree in Occupational Therapy from the University of Mary in Bismarck, ND in 2002. She earned her Certified Lymphedema Therapist (CLT) certification from Norton School in February 2007.
To learn more about our Occupational Therapy Department visit us at http://www.wellnessatwatersedge.com/services/OutpatientTherapies.aspx
The Lymphology Association of North America (LANA) is a non-profit corporation composed of healthcare professionals, including physicians, nurses, massage therapists, physical therapists, and occupational therapists experienced in the field of Lymphology and lymphedema. They have acknowledged the need for a national certification examination for lymphedema therapists, to test knowledge considered fundamental in the treatment of lymphedema.
For more information on LALA visit: http://www.clt-lana.org/about.html