Case study: Occupational Therapist Rebecca explains her role within the Home First team

Published May 5, 2018 at 7:31

Name & Job Title

My name is Rebecca Rees and I am an Occupational Therapist in the Home First team.

What is your role within the Home First Team?

Once someone has been discharged from hospital and into the Home First service, as an Occupational Therapist I go out to do the initial home visit to look at how they function in their own home. This includes looking at how they can mobilise around their home, identifying any trip hazards, whether they can prepare their own meals, if they can get on and off their chair and toilet and also things like whether they can get themselves washed and dressed. We then provide any equipment that is needed to support them to live independently whilst they recover. I also look at if the person is at risk of developing pressure sores, how they manage any medication and if needed refer them to care and support services such as Community Physiotherapy, Community Connectors, District Nurse team, Pulmonary Rehabilitation etc. If equipment is prescribed then the therapist will go back out and check that this is suitable and meeting that individual’s needs.

Together with the individual and social worker (or review and assessment officer) we form goals towards recovery. Our support workers will work on those goals with the person during their time with Home First.

What benefits do you see for you and for patients?

The Home First team provides that initial care and support which for some people is all they need. Home First enables us to get people home quicker and provide them with fast access to the services that they need to help them to recover. This helps reduce recovery times and increases independence.

We do the initial visit jointly with a therapist and either a social worker or Review and Assessment Officer; this means that the person is given a holistic assessment of their needs from both a health and social needs perspective in their own home.

From a personal perspective, working within an integrated team means that information and knowledge is easily shared and we are learning from each other.

What message of encouragement would you give to staff that may be sceptical about changing the way they currently work as services improve and adapt to meet the diverse needs of people in Pennine Lancashire?

Give it a go! It’s not as scary as you think it is!

Keep talking to each other, communication is really important.