OTA Schooling, Where?

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Katy in Littleton, Colorado

89 months ago

Im trying to find a school to go to for Occupational Therapy Assistant and I keep hitting a dead end. I need it in the Denver area or online anywhere, does anyone have suggestions where to look or know of a good school?

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RickCOTA

89 months ago

Take a look at this web site... you will find the info your looking for. The site says there is only one OTA program in Colorado... Pueblo Community College. www.aota.org/Students/Schools/EntryLevelOTA/40561.aspx#ar

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Sharron a COTA

88 months ago

You cannot get an OTA degree online. Also I've heard it is getting difficult for schools to find OTA students their clinical fieldwork and internships.

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Katy in Littleton, Colorado

88 months ago

RickCOTA said: Take a look at this web site... you will find the info your looking for. The site says there is only one OTA program in Colorado... Pueblo Community College. www.aota.org/Students/Schools/EntryLevelOTA/40561.aspx#ar

How did you get certified?

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Bob in Portland, OR

88 months ago

It's amazing all the OTA programs that have closed in the last seven years. They say the need is expected to grow much faster then other careers but when you are looking for a job why can't you find anyone who wants to hire you. If they do it's usually the job from hell. Makes you wonder where the future really lies for COTAs.

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Lindy in Denver, Colorado

83 months ago

Rebecca in Salem, Oregon said: I have a friend who is a former COTA in Colorado and she left the field a year ago last May because the pay was so bad. She just got her degree as a Physician's Assistant and so far after one year she loves it. Average pay for a PA is 80K a year and you only need an Associates degree. COTA's in Colorado make about $15-$18 an hour depending on experience.

You need a bach. degree..then two more years to be a Physicians assistant...

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Karma in Colorado Springs, CO

83 months ago

Lindy in Denver, Colorado said: You need a bach. degree..then two more years to be a Physicians assistant...

I totally disagree with you. I got my PA from Red Rocks Community College in Colorado and I only had to go for two years. There's a catch however. You have to have ten years or more experience in any area of the health care field to get accepted. I was an LVN for 12 years so I had a lot of knowledge in medical terminology and patient care. This is an 8 hour a day, five days a week program that runs year round... no breaks! So you better be financially set because there's no way you can work and go to school. I think RRCC has a great program.

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Linda in Boulder, Colorado

79 months ago

So are there very few jobs for people that are just entering the OTA field? I am considering switching careers. What are aspects of the job that you really like and aspects that you don't like? I would appreciate anyone's comments as I am just starting to research other careers and their education/certification requirements. Thanks

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Kimberly in Colorado Springs, CO

79 months ago

Linda in Boulder, Colorado said: So are there very few jobs for people that are just entering the OTA field? I am considering switching careers. What are aspects of the job that you really like and aspects that you don't like? I would appreciate anyone's comments as I am just starting to research other careers and their education/certification requirements. Thanks

Do yourself a favor and find something else to do. There are limited jobs in Colorado and unless you are willing to move somewhere the job market is good for COTAs, your going to be very disappointed when you graduate. I just graduated and started looking a few months ago before I graduated and can't find anything.

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Peter in Houston, Texas

79 months ago

Well I'm in a market where its good for COTAS but I'm looking to get out of the field. Unfortunately Kimberly is right about being disappointed when you graduate, if you notice through out these forums there is an apparent undertone of dissatisfaction with most of the current COTAS. There is a reason for that. You can either stick it out and make the best of it, or find something else that makes you happy. I'm chosing the latter.

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Tracy in Bulverde, Texas

79 months ago

Peter in Houston, Texas said: Well I'm in a market where its good for COTAS but I'm looking to get out of the field. Unfortunately Kimberly is right about being disappointed when you graduate, if you notice through out these forums there is an apparent undertone of dissatisfaction with most of the current COTAS. There is a reason for that. You can either stick it out and make the best of it, or find something else that makes you happy. I'm chosing the latter.

-- Peter, I worked as a COTA for 12 years in REHAB, I "retired" in 1987, I am considering getting re-certified. I was struck by your comments. Can you tell me what your dissattisfactions are? I am actually thinking of working in the schools w/ Peds. I would love to hear your feedback.

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Thelma in Albany, NY

79 months ago

I have been a COTA for one year and have been replaced by a foreign therapists twice. It seems they are willing to take the same salary as a COTA. Most companies will take them for this reason while at the same time, have someone who can do evals... the best of both worlds. Personally, I think we need to stop these people from coming to the US and taking jobs from COTAs like me.

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Lynn Conrad in Wasilla, Alaska

78 months ago

Katy in Littleton, Colorado said: Im trying to find a school to go to for Occupational Therapy Assistant and I keep hitting a dead end. I need it in the Denver area or online anywhere, does anyone have suggestions where to look or know of a good school?

You might try looking at Green River Community College in Auburn WA. I earned my COTA from them back in 1972, and after all these years, they have now added an online program. I'm not sure how the clinical piece works, but I know they have a distance education program, and it's a good school.

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Les in Harvey, Illinois

76 months ago

I am considering attending school for COTA in Chicago does anyone think thats a bad idea? I don't want to waste my time going to school and i am unable to find a job.

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susan in Dayton, Ohio

75 months ago

i am thinking about going back to school and getting a master degree in occ therapy. i already have a master degree in public administration but cannot seem to find a job in my field and i figure something medical should have more jobs available. i also would like to make at least 50,000 a year so that i will be able to pay off my student loans. i would be working in the dayton or cincinnati, ohio area. is this a growing field?

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Rebekah in Madison, Wisconsin

73 months ago

I am a Recreation Therapist and want to switch careers. I am considering a degree in occupational therapy because I heard the pay is better and I would be able to work in a hospital. I live in wi and will not be able to move. Is Occ. Therapy a bad idea? Should I keep searching for something else?

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kat in Fairbanks, Alaska

72 months ago

looking to earn a COTA in OT but need to do much of it online as employed for next 3 years as sped ed tchr (retiring in 3)-ideas out there for best choices?
Thanks

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Kerri in Westminster, Colorado

71 months ago

susan in Dayton, Ohio said: i am thinking about going back to school and getting a master degree in occ therapy. i already have a master degree in public administration but cannot seem to find a job in my field and i figure something medical should have more jobs available. i also would like to make at least 50,000 a year so that i will be able to pay off my student loans. i would be working in the dayton or cincinnati, ohio area. is this a growing field?

Like you, Susan, I have a M.S. degree and have had difficulty finding solid work. My Art Ed degree left me with few options, especially since the "no child left behind" act wiped out art from so many school systems. I am considering OT and PT as career shifts. I have heard consistently about a growing and insatiable need for COTA but don't see the evidence in the job leads that I search for CO. Also, finding a school to certify me is not easy. PTA seems a more solid choice, although many PT's prefer to carry out therapy on their own. I am volunteering at a local PT/OT office - where there are 6 PT to 1 part time OT. The OT ran her own business for many years, but had to close it several years ago. If I find more details I will add later.

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TM in Meriden, Connecticut

70 months ago

For anyone who has been a COTA - could you give me a rough idea of what the daily job entails? It sounds like I could use my creativity and people skills with a COTA job so a 2 yr. education seemed worth it. It sounded so promising for job prospects here in CT...but from all of the entries I have read here, I get a whole different picture of future (un)employment. Thanks for any info!

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ColoradoCOTA in Denver, Colorado

70 months ago

TM in Meriden, Connecticut said: For anyone who has been a COTA - could you give me a rough idea of what the daily job entails? It sounds like I could use my creativity and people skills with a COTA job so a 2 yr. education seemed worth it. It sounded so promising for job prospects here in CT...but from all of the entries I have read here, I get a whole different picture of future (un)employment. Thanks for any info!

I am a COTA and have been for about 2 1/2 years. I LOVE my job. Eventually, I would like to go back to school and wind up with a Master's in OT, though. (Mostly for the difference in pay, but also because I know I have what it takes.) The daily job responsibilities of a COTA can vary tremendously depending on setting, but the bottom line is that the COTAs usually get the most "face time" with the patients while the OTRs have more paperwork to deal with. Creativity and people skills are absolute MUSTS! I can't speak of the availability of jobs, but in my experience many facilities will have multiple COTAs working under one/each OTR. In which case, the OTR does the evaluations, treatment planning, possibly reimbursement work while the COTAs do all of the treatments.
I say go for it! It is as rewarding as you make it! :o)

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mhoffman in Sterling, Virginia

69 months ago

I am in Sterling VA and looking for a local program to become an Occupational Therapy Assistant. This is proving to be quite a challenge. Any advice?

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ed egvais in Cranston, Rhode Island

69 months ago

Katy I don't know in your area but what i will tell you is when you get to anatomy (lab portion) make up pins with nametags on them to identify different parts of what ever it is you will be studing in lab good luck

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Melody in Tucson, Arizona

69 months ago

Katy in Littleton, Colorado said: Im trying to find a school to go to for Occupational Therapy Assistant and I keep hitting a dead end. I need it in the Denver area or online anywhere, does anyone have suggestions where to look or know of a good school?

There is a school in denver. Pima Medical Institute

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Melody in Tucson, Arizona

69 months ago

Lynn Conrad in Wasilla, Alaska said: You might try looking at Green River Community College in Auburn WA. I earned my COTA from them back in 1972, and after all these years, they have now added an online program. I'm not sure how the clinical piece works, but I know they have a distance education program, and it's a good school.

Pima Medical Institute in Denver colorado is starting a program soon.

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YellowFish in Denver, Colorado

69 months ago

I also LOVE being an OT - I was a COTA for about 12 years before going back for more OT education. I have had some of the coolest jobs, both as an OTA and as an OT.
My experience is that there ARE jobs in the Denver area and in CO, but not the OTAs/OTs to fill them. I receive postcards in the mail about jobs that are available, some with offers of sign-on bonuses. I have never not had an OT job, and while I may not have loved all aspects of all jobs, I agree with others who say it is what you make it (as is any job/career field)
I do feel fortunate - I wouldn't change my career for any other.

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Kris in Brookville, Pennsylvania

69 months ago

RickCOTA said: You have to graduate from an Accredited OTA program. Once you do that you can take take the "National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy" or NBCOT Exam. You can find all the information you want at www.nbcot.org . They are talking about raising the fee to $800.00 by 2009. The test is not easy so be warned. I graduated from Pueblo Community College about 25 years ago. At that time there were six schools that offered the program. However, there has been a large decline in interest from prospective students. Westwood, Red Rocks CC, and Arapahoe Community College all had the program but they did away with them due to lack of interest.

I didnt really get what you were sayin sorry.

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Sara in Murray, Kentucky

68 months ago

Kimberly in Colorado Springs, CO said: Do yourself a favor and find something else to do. There are limited jobs in Colorado and unless you are willing to move somewhere the job market is good for COTAs, your going to be very disappointed when you graduate. I just graduated and started looking a few months ago before I graduated and can't find anything.

Depends on where u live. In Ky the average grad makes 25 to 30 an hour, the day outta ota school. They fight for ya here!

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jeannie0130@msn.com in Bellevue, Washington

68 months ago

Sara in Murray, Kentucky said: Depends on where u live. In Ky the average grad makes 25 to 30 an hour, the day outta ota school. They fight for ya here!

Sara,

Are those rates for permanent employees or travelers?
Please advise,
Thanks Jeannie

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Rick in San Diego, CA

68 months ago

YellowFish in Denver, Colorado said: I also LOVE being an OT - I was a COTA for about 12 years before going back for more OT education. I have had some of the coolest jobs, both as an OTA and as an OT.
My experience is that there ARE jobs in the Denver area and in CO, but not the OTAs/OTs to fill them. I receive postcards in the mail about jobs that are available, some with offers of sign-on bonuses. I have never not had an OT job, and while I may not have loved all aspects of all jobs, I agree with others who say it is what you make it (as is any job/career field)
I do feel fortunate - I wouldn't change my career for any other.

Strang, I lived and grew up in Colorado and could not find a single job there four years ago. I have talked to I don't know how many recruiters and companies and they all say... " sorry, we don't have anything right now, but if you send us your resume we will keep it on file and when something does become available, we we contact you". Same old, same old.

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Alex in Louisville, Kentucky

67 months ago

Hello all. I currently work in the non-profit sector as a direct support professional, here in Kentucky. Work with the MR/DD population, I have a Bachelor's, and dont know if its worth going to start an OTA program, or go for my Masters in Occ Therapy. Is there more work available as and COTA or and OT in KY? (Louisville specifically) Thanks for all the input.

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NicoleR36 in Louisville, Colorado

67 months ago

Im not sure if this will help or not for those who are COTA in Colorado. I am a manager of a home healthcare company that also does a lot of facility work. I am in HUGE need of a COTA and OTAs who are not certified to start work immediately in the longmont and denver area. I am coming up short with finding them. Does anyone know any other places to look besides careerbuilder, monster and craigs list for them? If you are one and are interested please let me know. Thanks for any help in advance.

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YellowFish in Westminster, Colorado

67 months ago

NicoleR36 in Louisville, Colorado said: Im not sure if this will help or not for those who are COTA in Colorado. I am a manager of a home healthcare company that also does a lot of facility work. I am in HUGE need of a COTA and OTAs who are not certified to start work immediately in the longmont and denver area. I am coming up short with finding them. Does anyone know any other places to look besides careerbuilder, monster and craigs list for them? If you are one and are interested please let me know. Thanks for any help in advance.

Have you posted on AOTA or OTAC (state association)'s websites? What about with jobing.com (Denver metro 'branch')
But why are you looking for OTAs who are not certified? I would think a company who engages in 'best practices' would want to make sure to hire only appropriately credentialed OTAs (ALL OTAs should have passed the NBCOT exam; whether they maintain their "C" with NBCOT is up to them/the employer - I hope that statement makes sense) Not hiring properly credentialed OTAs/COTAs will run you into a huge problem with OT supervision, billing, etc...
Good luck!

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NicoleR36 in Louisville, Colorado

67 months ago

Some of my contracts will actually take OTAs that are in the process of getting there certification. Sorry if I was not clear. Thank you for the websites I will definately look into those.

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cristyn in Lafayette, Colorado

67 months ago

NicoleR36 in Louisville, Colorado said: Im not sure if this will help or not for those who are COTA in Colorado. I am a manager of a home healthcare company that also does a lot of facility work. I am in HUGE need of a COTA and OTAs who are not certified to start work immediately in the longmont and denver area. I am coming up short with finding them. Does anyone know any other places to look besides careerbuilder, monster and craigs list for them? If you are one and are interested please let me know. Thanks for any help in advance.

Hi, I'm a new graduate COTA in Louisville, CO. I would like to know more about the positions open. Do offer training and is this an employee situation.
Thanks, Cristyn

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NicoleR36 in Louisville, Colorado

67 months ago

Cristyn I think I found your resume on a COTA site. If you want to email me at nsmith@brightstarhealthcare.com I can talk to you about our opportunities because there are lots of them. Thanks!

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COTA in Fort Myers, Florida

67 months ago

Nicole aren't you a recruiter for a staffing agency i.e. Bright Star?

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Tammy in Aurora, Colorado

66 months ago

I am considering going to school for Occupational Therapy Aide. It is only a 6 month program through Penn Foster. Does anyone know if I would be qualified to sit for COTA or any other exams or even find a job? I have searched everywhere for this information but cannot find anything. Any information will help. Thanks!

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Cindy in San Diego, California

66 months ago

In order to become a COTA you have to get an associates degree, which in most cases, is two to three years of college. There is no other way. As for getting a job as an OT aide, that depends on what the market is like in you're area.

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Melody in Tucson, Arizona

66 months ago

Katy in Littleton, Colorado said: Im trying to find a school to go to for Occupational Therapy Assistant and I keep hitting a dead end. I need it in the Denver area or online anywhere, does anyone have suggestions where to look or know of a good school?

I know there is a new program starting in Denver at Pima Medical Institute. Try that one.

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Nicole

65 months ago

I am a retired r.n. with a b.s.n.and would like the field of o.t.assistant what do i need would like to do it online thanks for your help.Nicole

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Cindy in San Diego, California

65 months ago

Nicole said: I am a retired r.n. with a b.s.n.and would like the field of o.t.assistant what do i need would like to do it online thanks for your help.Nicole

Why did you get out of nursing? I am getting out of OT and into nursing. Far as I'm concerned, Nursing is the way to go. I think you will find that out the hard way.

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uhu, aha in Bradenton, Florida

64 months ago

PULA

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flower in Lemon Grove, California

61 months ago

Katy in Littleton, Colorado said: Im trying to find a school to go to for Occupational Therapy Assistant and I keep hitting a dead end. I need it in the Denver area or online anywhere, does anyone have suggestions where to look or know of a good school?

Hi Katy, I just wanted to advise you that you can sign up online at www.pennfoster.com for an Occupational Therapy Assistant program. The program is affordable with a very low down payment and a low monthly payment, or other payment arrangments can be made with Penn Foster. Check it out.....

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mcbluefis in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire

60 months ago

flower in Lemon Grove, California said: Hi Katy, I just wanted to advise you that you can sign up online at www.pennfoster.com for an Occupational Therapy Assistant program. The program is affordable with a very low down payment and a low monthly payment, or other payment arrangments can be made with Penn Foster. Check it out.....

yes, an aide not an assitant...

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cristyn in Lafayette, Colorado

60 months ago

Pima Medical Institute in Denver just began an OTA program fall 2009. The director is the president of the Occupational Association of Colorado and a fantastic person. Check in out: www.pmi.edu/locations/denver.asp

Also, I temporarily moved to Pueblo, CO a couple of years ago to go through the OTA program at Pueblo Community College. I highly recommend this program!

Good Luck, Cristyn

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Rick in San Diego, California

60 months ago

FGT in Simpsonville, South Carolina said: Cristyn,
Are OTA jobs in the Denver area hard to come by? I have been an OTA for 1 year and have been thinking about moving to Denver.

Thanks.

Just got back from working in Denver and there are jobs available. However, the pay is among the lowest in the industry for COTAs. Expect to make about 16-18 dollars an hour with one years experience. Thats what most the COTAs I worked with were making. Colorado has never been a high paying state for any career.

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Rick in San Diego, California

60 months ago

cristyn in Lafayette, Colorado said: Pima Medical Institute in Denver just began an OTA program fall 2009. The director is the president of the Occupational Association of Colorado and a fantastic person. Check in out: www.pmi.edu/locations/denver.asp

Also, I temporarily moved to Pueblo, CO a couple of years ago to go through the OTA program at Pueblo Community College. I highly recommend this program!

Good Luck, Cristyn

Thats funny!!, I was one of the first graduates of that program when it opened up back in the early 80's. I was the only guy in the program at that time, the rest was females. The program director did not like me much because see felt OT was a woman's field and men should not be allowed in it. Oooooh, how things have changed.

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cotatraveler in Pikesville, Maryland

60 months ago

Hey Rick, whats the market like there in San Diego. I was thinking about getting a travel assignment there but my staffing coordinator said that San Diego is saturated with therapists right now. I'm finding it more difficult to find work as as a travel COTA these days. Right now, I am in exas and things don't look so good here either. Just wondering if jobs for COTAs are all going away.

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Rick in San Diego, California

60 months ago

cotatraveler in Pikesville, Maryland said: Hey Rick, whats the market like there in San Diego. I was thinking about getting a travel assignment there but my staffing coordinator said that San Diego is saturated with therapists right now. I'm finding it more difficult to find work as as a travel COTA these days. Right now, I am in exas and things don't look so good here either. Just wondering if jobs for COTAs are all going away.

San Diego is a one of those hit and miss places to look for a job as a therapist. Sometimes I get a lot of calls for work and sometimes I don't, it just denpends on the staffing needs of the facilities. More companies are pushing higher productivity and using less therapists around here. I am not worried about it though because I am not currently working as a COTA, I am doing something out of the field and have a lot of money saved up. I just finished a travel assignment in Colorado with Travel Med USA last week and all I can say is I am tired of all the games this company and other ones play, especially travel med usa. Anyone looking for a travel company, steer far away from this company, they will not take care of you.

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Kaye in Houston, Texas

60 months ago

In my area home care agencies are begging for COTAs.... and they are paying $40-$50 per visit.

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