Closed Trauma

Advanced Closed Trauma Course - Canberra 13-15 November 2019

8:00am Wednesday, 13 November 2019
12:30pm Friday, 15 November 2019
AHTA Courses
Cliftons Canberra
2/10 Moore Street
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 2601

Closed Trauma will build on existing knowledge of human anatomy, biomechanics and function as well as tissue injury and repair that is taught in the Fundamentals of Hand Therapy workshops. This 2.5-day course enables therapists to identify appropriate evidence-based therapeutic strategies, splinting, protocols and guidelines depending on the patient's stage in recovery and complications.

Following this course, you will be able to identify the critical anatomical structures of the digits, hand, wrist, elbow and shoulder that impact the conservative management of a range of traumatic conditions.  The types of conditions that will be covered range from Scaphoid lunate ligament injuries, Posterior interosseous nerve injuries, Radial head fractures and Shoulder Impingements.  

During this course, we look in depth at conditions associated with hand and upper limb trauma, including elbow and shoulder. You will further develop clinical reasoning skills appropriate to complex clinical scenarios, including but not limited to;

- Fractures

- Musculotendinous & Musculoskeletal conditions

- Ligament Injuries

- Neurovascular conditions

- Thoracic Outlet Syndrome

The trauma course will include a component on the shoulder as this is a core competency requirement of the AHT accreditation.


At the completion of this course, therapists will:

1. Demonstrate a thorough understanding of the complex anatomy, biomechanics and pathophysiology that is involved in upper limb multi trauma.

2. Describe the pathology and healing process in hand trauma.  

3. Analyse and interpret information gained from referral, assessment, medical investigations (eg X-ray) and knowledge of the pathophysiology of the upper limb injury/surgery. This is in order to identify the precise nature of the patients presenting problem and the clinical reasoning required to solve clinical challenges or variations at differing intervals across the healing cycle.

4. Where appropriate, practice through demonstration reliable and valid assessment techniques at differing intervals across the healing cycle.

5. Enhance awareness of intervention strategies (which may include an orthotic device/splint) for clients with specific hand and upper limb trauma, supported with sound clinical reasoning and current literature.

6. Become familiar with short and long-term goal setting for a patient including the treating surgeon and other members of the health care team. These goals should be realistic, client centred, should reflect the current stage of healing and consider the patients physical and psychological state. 

7. Enhance knowledge of appropriate intervention strategies and clinically reasoning what effect such interventions will have on the patient’s level of function throughout the treatment process.

For further information, please view the course schedule for this course.


Completed Fundamentals of Hand Therapy Course OR
Completed a Masters or postgraduate degree in Hand Therapy (PT/OT) OR
Be an Accredited Hand Therapist as awarded by the Australian Hand Therapy Association OR
Have a minimum of 2 years post-graduate experience in a hand therapy setting
Familiar with hand, wrist, elbow and shoulder anatomy
Familiar with provocative tests for wrist pathology


There will be two tests during the course, based on the course content and pre-readings. Tests are in a multiple choice /short answer format. There is no post-course assignment.


There will be practical sessions and it is recommended that you wear comfortable clothing, for example, gym gear.

Professional Development Credit

This is a certificate workshop, so along with the course content, participants are encouraged to undertake the prereading and complete the tests to allow them to claim 50 CPD hours for attendance at 2.5 days course. Participants not wishing to undertake assessment may claim 20 hours credit for attendance for 2.5 days. For those wishing to apply to become an Accredited Hand Therapist with the AHTA, this is a core course and successful completion of all components are a requirement for your application. 

Course and Booking Enquiries

To book your place, please ensure you are signed in or create an account and then click "Purchase Event" below. Discounts apply for Associates and Accredited Hand Therapists. The registration costs for Closed Trauma are:

Non-Member $1400

Associate $910

Accredited Hand Therapist $840

To become a member of the Association please click here

Registration Closing Date: 30 October 2019 (or until fully booked)

To ensure appropriate catering, please note any dietary requirements when completing the online registration form. Please note that not all requirements can be catered for at all venues.

Please read the Education Cancellation Policy before booking your place on this course.

For other enquiries, please contact

Intellectual Property Disclaimer

By registering for this course you agree that during the course, any contributions verbally or in writing which you make in regards to improving, altering or amending the content of the course, may be used by the AHTA in subsequent courses and will become the intellectual property of AHTA.

Please contact if you have any queries in relation to this disclaimer.


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Additional Information

About the presenter - Vicki Strelan

CHT, OT, Post Grad Dip in H & UL, Grad Cert in Soft Tissue Injuries

Vicki Strelan

Vicki was selected by the Australian Hand Therapy Association to join their presenter team in 2010, she currently presents courses in Advanced Trauma and Fundamentals of Hand Therapy. Vicki’s interests include multi-trauma, crush injuries and peripheral nerve injuries. Managing common injuries well is also a focus, specifically TFCC, volar plate and distal radius fractures.

At an academic level, Vicki has written and taught the curriculum in hand therapy for fourth-year occupational therapy students and was a senior lecturer at James Cook University. Vicki has spoken at international medical and rehabilitation conferences in Australia and New Zealand. For five years, she was elected to a panel of assessors for occupational therapy to advise the Queensland Minister for Health.

Arm to Palm Upper Limb Clinic (formerly Occupational Impact) is Vicki’s current private practice in Townsville, Queensland, opened in 2006. Her career history includes the formation of Reach Rehabilitation Pty Ltd in 1999, a specialised hand therapy private practice with multiple clinics based in Townsville. That same year Vicki was awarded a graduate diploma in hand and upper limb rehabilitation through Curtin University. In 2010, Vicki achieved a graduate certificate in soft tissue injury management through James Cook University. Apart from typical CPD activities, Vicki creates the opportunity to observe hand surgery in vivo whenever possible.


About the trainee presenter - Rebecca Crowley

B.App. Sc. (Physiotherapy), Grad. Dip. Mgt, Accredited Hand Therapist as awarded by the Australian Hand Therapy Association

Rebecca graduated in Physiotherapy in 1988. She worked at hospitals in Sydney and London before moving into Hand Therapy at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in 1993. Since 2006, she has worked for the Hand Therapy Group at practices in Hornsby, Macquarie University, Dee Why and the newly opened Northern Beaches Hospital. She has been a member of the AHTA since 2005 and served as Divisional Rep, in marketing and promotions as well as Chair of the annual AHTA Conference organizing committee in 2011 and 2016. Rebecca has also taught undergraduate students at the University of Sydney and the Australian Catholic University. Her interest and passion for treating patients with traumatic injuries started at RPAH and continues at Northern beaches and Pacific Hand Therapy.

About the trainee presenter - Melanie McCulloch

OT, AHT (AHTA), Grad Dip (Hand Therapy), Accredited Hand Therapist as awarded by the Australian Hand Therapy Association

Melanie has over 20 years experience in hand and upper limb rehabilitation, working mostly in trauma across both public and private sectors. She is the Director and Senior Hand Therapist at Re-wired Hand Therapy & Nerve Recovery in Melbourne, Victoria. She has extensive experience in the treatment of brachial plexus injury and has presented at National and International conferences including an AHTA workshop on Nerve Transfer Rehabilitation in 2017. Melanie graduated from La Trobe University in Occupational Therapy and has a Graduate Certificate in Hand Therapy from Derby in the UK. She is a current Member of the Credentialing Council of the AHTA.

About the trainee presenter - Susie Stinton

BSc (Physiotherapist), CHT (USA), Accredited Hand Therapist as awarded by the Australian Hand Therapy Association

Susie graduated from Curtin University in 2005 and has been working solely in the Hand Therapy field for the last 10 years. Prior to this, her experience included work in hospital burns, trauma and plastic surgery departments. She has since worked in public and private clinics; in Perth, Sydney and London. She is currently working at InHand, a private practice in Perth. Alongside her clinical caseload, Susie is currently undertaking a Ph.D., with her thesis on driving performance following wrist fractures. She has published two scientific articles in academic journals.

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