To mark Occupational Therapy (OT) Week, we asked two of our BTH colleagues, Ryan Stephenson and Zowie Pendlebury to describe what being an OT is all about and what they enjoy most about their role.
Ryan, a Static Occupational Therapist, was in the Navy where he first observed OTs at work and was inspired to move into the field.
He says “I enjoy the complexities of the role and helping others overcome mental and physical barriers to promote health and wellbeing. As a therapist on the care of the elderly setting, I commonly see frailty patients who are high falls risk, as the Occupational Therapist I have to consider their functional ability, support at home, potential cognitive barriers and home environment.”
Zowie is a newly graduated Occupational Therapist on the Integrated Therapy Team which comprises both Physiotherapists and OTs.
Predominantly based within the Emergency Department and acute ward settings, once a patient is well enough medically to leave hospital, the team assesses their social circumstances, environmental needs, functional abilities and level of cognition. Then, it considers whether a patient may require some support, whether it be some carer support to help with their transition back into their home setting, minor adaptations to enhance independence or, some therapy to improve functional capabilities, independence and confidence levels.
Zowie added: “I really enjoy the problem-solving aspect of the role. It’s interesting to analyse many different contexts of a person’s circumstances and to formulate a unique plan. The conclusions from our assessments and the support we are able to implement can really make a difference to an individual’s health, wellbeing and their ability to remain independent.”
Are you interested in a career as an OT? You’d be helping many types of people to overcome different challenges. If you’d like to work in a variety of settings, whilst promoting physical and mental health then Occupational Therapy may be the ideal career choice. You can find out more about this rewarding and interesting career path here.