The mission of the Assistive Technology & Research Center (ATRC) at MedStar National Rehabilitation Network (MedStar NRH) is to invent, develop, evaluate, and deploy technologies that enhance recovery, foster independent living, and aid the clinical practice of rehabilitation medicine.
The art and science of Assistive Technology (AT) applies modern technologies to the practice of medical rehabilitation and technological support for independent living for individuals with disabilities. AT projects at MedStar NRH span many research areas and involve individual researchers from a variety of hospital services and clinical professions.
AT activities at MedStar NRH take advantage of a unusual combination of skills, facilities and interests; specifically a strong community of research and development specialists in biomedical engineering and neuropsychology is positioned to undertake collaborative projects unlike those under way at more conventionally staffed laboratories.
MedStar NRH AT projects have historically targeted the needs of individuals with head injury, stroke, spinal cord injury and developmental disabilities. These activities address the clinical techniques of psychologists, occupational and physical therapist, physicians and speech pathologists. They make use of technologies based particularly in software development but also in man-machine systems, human factors, biomechanics, telehealth, virtual reality methods, and instrumentation. Assessment and enhancement of motor and cognitive function; and support and measurement of functional performance are the prevailing research themes.