The OT Badge : Alok Patil : Unplugged

EC member of the Mumbai Branch of AIOTA, one of the coolest senior I had, innovative in creating new therapeutic equipments, winner of the Youth talent award  at the last AIOTA conference, a talented mimicry artist (I loved the way you mimicked me on my farewell),  Alok Patil. He designed the recently launched OT badge by the MBAIOTA. The OT badge is seen hooked proudly to Apron’s of many Occupational therapist across Mumbai. Each therapist has a story to say about the OT badge,stories which have helped them to get recognized as OTist and not OTPT J…..here’s Alok Patil interviewing on what went behind the making of the OT badge……

 

Hey Alok thanks for agreeing to interview for the blog……

 

It’s my pleasure Raviraj.

 

Q 1) Firstly, congrats for a thoughtful initiative of the MBAIOTA’s ‘OT badge’ ….

Thank you. The ‘OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST’ badge was introduced as  a part of our ‘OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY AWARENESS’ campaign by the Mumbai Branch of All India Occupational Therapists Association (MB-AIOTA)

 

Q.2 ) What were the reasons that led to the creation of the OT Badge ?

OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY AWARENESS! Let’s face it, the level of awareness about the role of Occupational Therapy is low in the medical community & almost negligent in the general population. Today Occupational Therapy plays a vital role in the holistic rehabilitation of Orthopedic, Neurological, Pediatric, Psychiatric, Cardiovascular and Surgical disorders. The research base of Occupational Therapy too is increasing. However the lack of awareness is intriguing. People still have difficulty in associating the term “OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY” with the work an “OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST” does. We wanted to make “OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY” a brand name and the “OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST” – its brand ambassador!

 

Q.3) I Remember you showing me the three sample designs of the OT badge that you had drawn in the common room and asking which one look’s better……

What went behind making of the ‘OT BADGE’? What was the process like?

 

Well, when we decided to make an “OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST” badge, we had numerous choices to make. In fact the tentative designs were short listed to 5. We ordered the 5 designs to be manufactured and after much consideration, the present design was finalized based on the following criterias:

 

  • Material: Metal (brass) is long lasting, strong, attractive, and denotes authority.
  • Size: Big.
  • Visibility: The badge can be read from 30 feet or more.
  • Content: Only the term “OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST”. We wanted the badge to be used as freely as possible any where in the world and in any institute. Therefore although it was a Mumbai Branch of A.I.O.T.A endeavor, you will not find any identification marks on the badge.
  • Colour: We used the gold and black colours – for the formal look and good contrast.

Q.4) What were the initial reactions of the OT community to the badge?

 

After we finalized the badge design, I was fortunate enough to test it for feedback. In fact before any OT colleagues could see it, I had to attend Orthopaedic ward rounds. As soon as I entered the ward, the Orthopedic Surgeons noticed the badge and started inquiring about it. Then followed my three minute speech about the badge…during the ward rounds!

The OT colleagues welcomed the badge excitedly. Some of them had reservations about the idea. One Therapist asked me “don’t you think the badge is big?” Well of course it is big…and so is the need for OT awareness, identity and assertiveness. If you are proud to be an OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST, go on declare it!

 

Q.5) How has the response been so far?

The first set of badges was exhausted on the very day of badge inauguration. After noticing the demand we are in the process of placing a bigger order for production.

Q.6) Any plans to go national….

The badge has been designed to assert our professional identity, provide optimum visibility, and use in any institute. We will encourage its use by Occupational Therapists from not onlyIndiabut any part of the world. We have also submitted the badge design to the A.I.O.T.A for due consideration. Let’s hope for the best.

All the best for great endeavors in future….

 

Thank you Raviraj. I think the OT scenario is going to change for good. But we have to be the change we want to see !

 

PS :- any of you interested in getting hold of the badge , you can contact Alok on his facebook page http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000921195974&sk=info  or you can contact the Mumbai Branch of AIOTA on their website http://www.mbaiota.com/about-us.html.