Occupational therapy in non-traditional roles

Posted on November 2, 2018 by AireAdmin No Comments

Hello my name is Bev and I work as an occupational therapist clinical assessor within the multi-agency integrated discharge (MAID) team and intermediate care (IC) hub.

Whilst this isn’t a traditional OT role, it demands knowledge of complex discharges, issues that can impact on the rehabilitation process and discharge, knowledge of wider MTD and services available, strong communication skills, and a wide knowledge of health and social care issues that may have negative impacts – all traditional OT skills that we use on a daily basis!


I take community referrals from GPs and health/social care professionals and triage patients to get them into the right service at the right time.  I also screen referrals to ensure that a patient is appropriate for inpatient rehabilitation, and communicate across the wider MDT to gather any further required information. I review MAID waiting lists, screen referrals for support via collaborative care teams, and coordinate associated discharges.

I also occasionally work with the bed managers when the hospital is experiencing a high demand for beds, and identify suitable patients for transfer to our intermediate care ward.

More recently, since becoming part of the MAID team, I am now working closely with our team of case managers, and I particularly enjoy our morning huddles with them and our social workers, screening complex referrals together to gain a multi-agency approach to attain the best outcome for a patients.

I have also started to become involved with the brand new East Lancashire service, ‘Home First’, and have recently carried out in depth screening alongside a case manager, in order to become more familiar with this process. This basically involves ensuring that the patient is safe to go home, that both patient and relatives are aware and agree to this service, ensuring that the patient is medically stable, completing all Home First paperwork and making sure that any existing care package is restarted on the day of discharge. It is then all systems go to get the patient discharged in time for our regular 11am assessment slot with Home First, and liaising with all parties concerned to ensure that this goes smoothly!

Whilst I miss being ‘hands on’ with my patients, I really do enjoy the screening of more complex patients and working alongside my talented MDT colleagues, who have greatly increased my own levels of knowledge and clinical understanding. I have now become an enthusiastic convert to all things related to SystmOne (digital patient record). I also like to think that as an (almost!) lone OT, working within this environment I have made my lovely MDT colleagues a little more aware of the importance of knowledge and understanding of an individuals’ functional independence and the importance of personal and domestic activities of daily living assessments!

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