Occupational Therapist/Clinical Coordinator
Judi Wessels holds a bachelors in Occupational Therapy from the Free State University in South Africa and she is certified in various therapeutic modalities. Her career as a clinical paediatric and early intervention specialist span over a period of 37 years while working in a variety of therapeutic contexts including but not limited to NICU, PICU, private practice working with developmental delays, sensory integration and learning difficulties, special needs education, and inpatient and outpatient physical rehabilitation. Her previous experience in the Middle East includes leading a CARF accredited Paediatric Specialty Program and team, and her passion for the development of evidence-based rehabilitation programs making use of clinical outcome measures is well recognized. She has a strong orientation to interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary teamwork and has experience in working with national and international teams.
As a paediatric specialist she works from the perspective that the sensory system of the child is the first point of departure for any therapeutic intervention to progress, and she has a special interest, extensive training and vast experience in Sensory Integration and the Polyvagal Theory. She is a certified paediatric and baby/infant neurodevelopmental therapist where the physical rehabilitation of children toward achieving the goals of participation in selfcare, play and education remains the focus. She is well versed in the use of standardized tests especially when working with developmental delay and scholastically challenged children.
She has a strong believe in the resilience of children as well as the importance of working with a family centred approach where the role of the parents in the progress of their child is seen as an essential ingredient, and where carry-over of therapy principles into the home environment can take place. She has developed several parent-education programmes and fact sheets. She has additional training in Life Coaching in her toolkit.
In her spare time, she has a keen interest in her family, personal development, yoga, and meditation.
Clinical Certifications / Trainings includes:
- Certified Paediatric Neurodevelopmental Therapy
- Certified Advanced Paediatric Neurodevelopmental Therapy (baby/infant)
- Certified Infant Massage Instructor
- Certified TRE Practitioner (Trauma and Stress Releasing Exercise)
- Certified Basic Life Support
- Sensory Integration practitioner (extensive training/ course work, and experience)
- Certified Safe and Sound Protocol (SSP) Practitioner – based on the Polyvagal Theory
- Cortical Visual Impairments
- Developmental Care (NICU)
- Feeding and suck-swallow-breathe therapy
- Shoulder stability and handwriting
- Outcome based rehabilitation
- Wee-FIM (paediatric functional independence measure)
- Adaptive play for children of determination
- Play therapy
- Integrative Life Coaching
- Licenced Occupational Therapist with Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA)
- Member of Occupational Therapy Association of South Africa (OTASA)
- Licenced Occupational Therapist with Dubai Health Authority (DHA)