The occupational therapist’s role within the Spinal Cord Injury Centre includes:
- Teach individuals, skills to be able to perform personal and domestic activities of daily living such as feeding, washing and dressing.
- Optimise upper limb function. Assessment and treatment of upper limbs, fabrication of splints, use of assistive technology and specialised equipment.
- Assessment and modification recommendations of physical and environmental barriers in the home and community. Discharge planning.
- Facilitate the return to gainful occupation, work, and education.
- Facilitate the return to social re-integration, accessing local facilities, shopping, sports and transport.
- Driving, support with returning to driving or access to vehicles and transport.
- Mobility, work on functional mobility issues within the home environment and community.
- Teach self–management , energy conservation, joint protection techniques and problem solving
- Work with individuals who require assistance from caregivers to direct their own care.
Physiotherapists are involved in the management of chests and breathing, and the maintenance of joint mobility by means of stretches and exercises.
The physiotherapists will help patients to improve strength and balance and help with skills that will allow patients to maximise their independence within the limitations of their injury.
They will liaise with local wheelchair service regarding provision of a wheelchair.
If patients require physiotherapy after discharge they will organise it in the patient’s local area. However, most patients do not need physiotherapy after discharge. Getting on with daily life is more than adequate to maintain the level of independence achieved by discharge.
The therapy assistants work under the supervision of the occupational therapists and physiotherapists and will work with patients to achieve your therapy goals.
The computer specialist works closely with the therapists. The IT suite offers patients the opportunity to train and learn about computers and how they can now facilitate them after sustaining a spinal cord injury.
The suite has access to the internet and email with a wide range of assistive technology devises such as head mice, dragon voice and many other aids specifically designed with our patients needs in mind.