22 February 2019

Occupational therapists provide practical support to help patients with their recovery and overcome any barriers preventing them from doing the activities that matter to them. This helps to increase independence and satisfaction in all aspects of their life.

‘Occupation’ refers to practical and purposeful activities that allow people to live independently and have a sense of identity - this includes essential day-to-day tasks such as self-care, work or leisure.

At Royal Papworth Hospital, the Occupational Therapy (OT) team primarily focuses on maximising patient independence with functional transfers and mobility, personal care and domestic tasks, all while considering the home environment. 

“In such an acute hospital, we aim to discharge the patient in the most timely and safe way possible,” said Team Lead Occupational Therapist Amy Chadwick.

The team consists of seven occupational therapists, one occupational therapy assistant practitioner and two generic therapy assistants, who run the service from 0730-1630 Monday-Friday and 0800-1600 on Saturdays and Bank Holidays. 

Working in different departments across the whole hospital – such as Transplant, RSSC, and the Chest Medical and Cystic Fibrosis units, as well as in breathlessness clinics and pulmonary rehabilitation groups – the team received an average of 105 referrals per month during the past year.

A wide variety of patients benefit from occupational therapy, including those who were not coping at home before they came into hospital, those who are less independent after their cardiothoracic surgery/intervention, and even those who are terminally ill hoping to get home as soon as possible. 

The department will be expanding its range of therapeutic treatments when the hospital moves to the Cambridge Biomedical Campus in April 2019. A new 'Activities of Daily Living' kitchen will be available to use with patients, and a relaxation group will soon be set up. 

The team will also be working closely with the Physiotherapy team on a sternotomy precautions project, as well as being involved in improving the patient pathway for frail in-house urgent patients and elective cardiac surgery/TAVI patients. 

We are currently looking for two enthusastic occupational therapists to join the team ahead of the move to our new hospital.

For more information and details of how to apply, visit our allied health professionals vacancies page