Occupational therapist

Kelly HamblinKelly Hamblin
Highly Specialised Occupational Therapist, joined the Trust in 2004

What is your role?

I work at the Wolfson Neurorehabilitation, which is part of St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, and assess and treat people who have neurological problems. The role of an Occupational Therapist (OT) is to assess the impact of physical, sensory, cognitive or emotional difficulties on someone’s ability to carry out daily activities. I then devise a treatment plan with that individual – usually using both a rehabilitative and compensatory approach.

I mainly work with people who have had strokes but our team also work with people who have other neurological diagnosis, e.g. traumatic brain injury, multiple sclerosis and Guillain Barre syndrome. Each of us carry a caseload of up to six patients and patient sessions are allocated according to individual’s goals.

What does a typical working day look like?

My week would include treatment sessions, team meetings, project meetings, goal planning meetings and time for lots of paperwork! Treatment sessions can be individual or joint with colleagues from other disciplines. Team meetings are either profession-specific, for example, just OTs, or, multidiscliplinary, with a representative from each disciplinal. Goal planning meetings are patient-specific and comprise the whole treating team.

Our days are very full and inevitably things come up that we haven’t planned for so it can be very busy indeed!

What do you enjoy most about your job?

Occupational therapy has a lot of variety and is a very client-centred profession. Working in rehabilitation enables you to work with people for a significant amount of time on goals that are really important to them which is essential in a person succeeding. I also enjoy the team work that is necessary for making a person’s rehabilitation experience as productive as possible.

What level of patient contact do you have in your role?

I spend approximately 70 per cent of my time with patients and 30 per cent working in a non-clinical capacity.

What other members of the healthcare team do you work with?

I work with a multidisciplinary team of doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, speech and language therapists, clinical psychologists, social workers, a music therapist; the list is never ending!

What do you like about working for the Trust?

I like working for the Wolfson because it is a lovely environment. The people are friendly and as I mentioned before, there is a lot of great team working.

Why did you join the NHS?

Joining the NHS was a natural place to start after my occupational therapy degree course and I have been here ever since!