Sara Morgan, L/CPO
Sara with her husband and daughter.
Sara Morgan, L/CPO, has practiced O&P for 10 years and is currently pursuing her doctoral degree in rehabilitation science at University of Washington. Sara learned about prosthetics from a conversation with her father, which ultimately inspired her to pursue a career in O&P. Sara earned her bachelor's degree in orthotics and prosthetics at University of Washington.
Sara is committed to the field as a clinician, an educator, and a researcher. Her scientific manuscript was recently published in Quality of Life Research. Sara also contributes her time and skills to the Academy through presentations and volunteering on the Secondary Knowledge Committee. Outside of her busy schedule, she enjoys cooking, traveling, reading, and spending time with her husband and young daughter. We recently caught up with her to ask her some questions.
Why did you choose this profession?
My father always encouraged me to become an engineer, but I was interested in medicine and education. At one point, he told me that engineers make prosthetic limbs, which I thought was fascinating. After a bit of searching, I found the field of prosthetics and orthotics and felt that it was a perfect fit given my interests.
What has been most satisfying about your decision to go into the field?
This profession is very rewarding and I feel fortunate to have found opportunities to work as a care provider, an educator, and a researcher. Engaging in the field in these different capacities continuously presents new challenges, so I never feel bored with my job.
What has changed the most about the field since you became a practitioner?
The biggest change has been the growing use of scientific evidence to guide clinical decision-making. When I first became a practitioner, clinical decision-making was often based on past experiences with similar cases and consensus among colleagues. These resources are still valuable, but the addition of a literature search lends objectivity to the process that will ultimately elevate the status of our profession.
What has been the most frustrating about this field?
The complex nature of the reimbursement process has always been a challenging part of working in healthcare.
Of what professional accomplishment are you most proud?
I recently had my first scientific manuscript published in a peer-reviewed journal, which was very exciting for me. "Use of cognitive interviews in the development of the PLUS-M item bank" was published in Quality of Life Research. It describes the results of qualitative research done in the process of developing a self-report measure of mobility for prosthetic limb users.
If you were speaking to high school or college students, what would you say to encourage them to choose this field?
Working as a prosthetist-orthotist is fun. You will have the opportunity to create long-lasting professional relationships with your patients while using both technical and critical thinking skills. In addition, many good people are drawn to this profession, so you will likely enjoy the company of your colleagues.
How has your Academy membership been of value to you?
The Academy has been very supportive of the role of research in clinical education, which is very valuable to me as a clinician and as a researcher. In addition, my involvement with the Academy has provided the opportunity to contribute to the profession through presentations at meetings and involvement with the Secondary Knowledge Committee.