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Jerrensia & Jen make national splash with message of inclusion

Guest blog by Jen Kroll, whose daughter Jerrensia has sought outpatient therapy at Mary Free Bed. This fall, Jen wrote a Facebook post about Target’s Halloween advertisement that included a little girl with leg braces and arm crutches. The post went viral and drew attention from Mashable, Upworthy and other publications. This is a follow-up…
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‘The tables turned’: Doctor reflects on patient experience

Guest blog by Dr. Marliee Mead, who has been the Medical Director of the Mary Free Bed East Beltline Hand Clinic As a hand and plastic surgeon, I have had a long professional relationship with Mary Free Bed therapists and physicians. I even participated in the creation of their 2013 Art Prize entry! Recently, the…
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Augmentative Communication provides options for speech

Augmentative and alternative communication can literally help to give a voice to individuals with diagnoses or conditions that can include amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), autism, stroke, cerebral palsy, Rett syndrome, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, traumatic brain injury and Down syndrome. In Mary Free Bed’s Augmentative Communication Program, a speech-language pathologist and occupational therapist work with…
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‘I’ll keep going until I can’t go anymore’

Thirty-four-year-old Nate Denofre doesn’t have much use for the term “disabled.” Born without legs below the knee – a result of amniotic band syndrome – Nate prefers to focus on what is possible for him to do, instead of what isn’t. His latest undertaking embodies the odds-defying spirit that’s driven him to live a life…
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Advances in foot drop rehabilitation benefit wide range of patients

There have been tremendous strides in foot drop rehabilitation in the last few decades, and Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital therapists have stayed in step with all the latest developments. “Foot drop” is the term commonly used to describe a difficulty in lifting the front part of the foot while walking. Foot drop can mean an…
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Educational opportunities abound at 2015 SCI Symposium

Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital was pleased to welcome 160 guests to the 2015 SCI Symposium held Thursday, Oct. 22, at the Prince Conference Center at Calvin College in Grand Rapids. The event, “Living | Loving,” covered a wide range of topics and drew a diverse audience. “As leaders in rehabilitation, it’s important for us…
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Mary Free Bed CEO Kent Riddle earns health leadership award

Congratulations to Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital’s chief executive officer Kent Riddle! Kent recently was honored by the Michigan Health & Hospital Association with a 2015 MHA Healthcare Leadership Award. Kent was recognized by the MHA for his role in guiding Mary Free Bed after hospital leaders decided it should remain an independent, community-owned organization. In his…
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Patients create mural art as part of recreational therapy

Just in time for National Rehabilitation Awareness Week — and the opening of the seventh year of ArtPrize — Mary Free Bed recreational therapists put the finishing touches on a new, temporary art project on the first floor of the hospital’s West Addition. The colorful mural features dozens of geometric shapes painted by rehabilitation patients as part of…
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National Rehabilitation Awareness Week 2015

Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital is gearing up for National Rehabilitation Awareness Week, celebrated Sunday, Sept. 20, through Saturday, Sept. 26. Staff and volunteers will get festive with activities like a build-a-scarecrow contest, pie-eating contest and a team cookout. Patients and families are invited to join in the fun for events like themed wardrobe days…
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