One of the major services provided in the facility is the Occupational Therapy which aims to help residents do the everyday things that they want and need to do despite of their illnesses and disabilities. The occupational therapy department endeavour to support both long and short-term residents with a range of disabilities to engage in meaningful occupations and maintain a level of independence.
At Hamilton Park Care Facility, the Occupational Therapy Department provides the following:
• Seating Assessment
• Assessment for Assistive Devices/Equipment
• Leisure and Productivity
• Environmental Adaptations
• Memory and Dementia Assessments and Reviews.
Occupational therapy is a health care profession that aims to help people do the everyday things that they want and need to do when faced with injury, illness, disability or challenging life events (WFOT, 2012). It is a client-centred profession, focusing on achieving the individuals own goals.
Through engaging in occupational therapy, the residents at our facility can develop function despite their illness and additional challenges, as well as increasing their sense of competency and personal happiness.
The occupational therapy department endeavour to support both long and short-term residents with a range of disabilities to engage in meaningful occupations and maintain a level of independence.
At Hamilton Park Care Facility, our Occupational Therapy Department provide the following:
Pressure sores are a severe, yet usually preventable, common problem amongst older adults or adults who are seated or lying for long periods of time due to their condition. The occupational therapist will assess the residents to ensure that their mattress, armchair and other seating solutions are meeting their needs and can provide pressure relieving equipment such as cushions or air-mattresses to those who may be at risk of developing a pressure sore. The Occupational Therapy Department continuously consults with other members of the multidisciplinary team or the nursing and care staff on the importance of moving an individual’s position if they are bedbound or have limited mobility to help prevent sores. Specialist seating solutions are also provided either by the Occupational Therapy Department or by an appropriate onward referral to a specialist seating clinic.
There are many different aids and appliances that when introduced into a person’s life, can make things a little bit easier and allow them to reengage in their daily activities. The Occupational Therapist can recommend equipment for a resident that will help to assist a person in their everyday lives. These assistive devices can help maintain a person’s independence and participation in their daily activities. The Occupational Therapist will also link with a variety of team members on alternative and specialist aids such as communicative devices for example and refer to specialist services where appropriate.
Leisure and Productivity
The occupational therapist will advise staff of any environmental adaptations that could be made to ensure a safe and functional environment for our residents. This could include ensuring that there is adequate lighting in all the rooms of the care facility, removing any potential fall/trip hazards such as rugs, ensuring that bedrooms and common areas are free from clutter and easily accessible for all residents, and the environment supports a person’s ability to participate in activities.
The occupational therapist will provide assessment and goal planning for residents so that their leisure and productivity is always considered. There are many activities and leisure pursuits at our facility and these are provided in conjunction with activities staff. Residents can attend any activities they choose but a full activity taster session is also available.
The Occupational Therapist will provide a home visit or link with relevant community supports to ensure that the environment a resident may be moving into meets the resident’s needs.
Memory and Dementia
Dementia is a condition that can severely impact on a person’s function in everyday life and ability to participate in activities that are meaningful to them. The occupational therapist will work with the individual (if in the early stages of the disease), family members and other staff members about dementia and its functional implications (Schaber, & Lieberman, 2010).
The occupational therapist will look at an individual’s capabilities, impairments and any areas requiring intervention, as highlighted by the individual, family members or members of staff. While there is no cure for this disease, the occupational therapist can help the individual to maintain a level of function through compensation or making adaptations. The occupational therapist can also ensure that the person is safe and happy within the nursing home.
The occupational therapist can also run reminiscence groups with residents to keep their minds active and these groups are also enjoyable for members.
Reminiscence groups give members an opportunity to share stories of when they were younger, look at pictures of famous people of their youth and also listen to old songs. An occupational therapist can also work with residents to overcome memory difficulties, related to general aging.
Acquired brain injury Unit
Occupational therapy ‘aims to enable and empower people to be competent and confident in their daily lives, and thereby enhance wellbeing and minimise the effects of dysfunction or environmental barriers’. Occupational therapists address such dysfunction ‘using a range of interventions that often include environment, teaching clients a new repertoire of skills or helping them to re-establish ones they have lost’. This is particularly important for people recovering from acquired brain injury. A wide range of ‘physical and neuropsychological impairments can impact on activities and meaningful occupations, while reducing a person’s level of social participation, including their ability to participate in educational and vocational activities’.
The Occupational therapist will work with a person, in collaboration with their family and friends, to help them make sense of their injury and achieve personal goals through participation in a range of meaningful and purposeful activities.