The occupational therapy department is fully equipped to perform its twin functions of upper limb rehabilitation and training in the activities of daily living.
The occupational therapist
Historically the role of the occupational therapist began early in the 20th century promoting health in invalids through a creative occupation. The modern practice of occupational therapy has developed in two related directions.
- Upper limb rehabilitation which involves therapy to strengthen the hand and arm and increase limb coordination thereby improving gross motor function as well as fine hand movement. Treatment may necessitate splinting and exercises to increase sensory awareness. In addition to exercises improving strength and range of movement of the upper limb there is an emphasis on regaining useful function e.g. use of cutlery, computer etc. using and advising the patient on appropriate aids (e.g. mouth stick, grips). Cognitive function is stimulated by performing activities that interest the patient e.g. music, art, handicrafts, computer. Educational assessment and assistance may be given. Advice is given and new skills taught to allow reintegration of the patient in the workplace.
- Practical training in activities of daily living, using aids where necessary, to achieve the maximum degree of autonomy in everyday life e.g. dressing, washing, bathing, food preparation and also advising on how this can be achieved in the patient’s own home. The therapist may teach the patient and carers how to transfer from a wheelchair (to bed, toilet, shower, car etc); assess the home or workplace and advise on strategies and equipment (ramps, grab bars etc) to assist them.
The occupational therapist at ANAPLASI, works closely with other members of the trans-disciplinary rehabilitation team to formulate a coordinated treatment plan, whose goals and outcomes are subject to frequent assessment and evaluation.
The occupational therapy department of ANAPLASI is situated in a pleasant, light-filled space on our first floor. Activities of daily living are performed in its kitchen, bedroom or bathroom areas.
The kitchen is kitted out with working hob, oven, fridge and a range of adapted cutlery and appliances. Patients enjoy using their newly regained skills to make sweets and treats.
The bedroom contains a bed of adjustable height, wardrobe and mirror to practise transfer from bed to wheelchair, and skills of dressing and self-care.
The bathroom is fully equipped with bath, toilet and sink, to train the patient in activities relating to personal hygiene.
Wheelchairs are provided for instruction of patient and carers.
In the clinical area wide range of equipment is provided for improvement of strength and coordination in the upper limb.
There are ample work surfaces, a computer station and a workbench for the construction of splints.