Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this blog are entirely our own and not necessarily those of our employer or any other occupational therapist.

Friday, 26 September 2008

From little acorns .................

image:New cohorts 2008

Having spent the last few weeks inducting our new students onto both the new MSc Advanced Occupational Therapy programme and our Part Time and Full Time undergraduate programmes we are now getting ready to
deliver the first modules.
It is strange how the academic cycle is repeated each year and yet it never fails to be different each time. As new cohorts are admitted and each student's evolution from inductee to graduant occurs it becomes clear how the development of an occupational therapist is not just about gaining knowledge and skills. It is the philosophy and the way that an OT thinks that is internalised by each successful student. Each year I find that I am discussing issues with my personal tutees that embrace how they are changing as a result of their learning, managing not only their immediate studies but also their own environments, applying the values of occupation to their own circumstances. Occasionally they experience occupational imbalance as their studies take preference over other aspects of their life (ususally around assessment time) and then family responsibility may take priority and they have to cope with juggling roles and routines in order to achieve their goals, constantly evaluating and reassessing their circumstances and their objectives. In this way they begin to realise that OT is not a 9-5 job, but a way of being, a way of reacting to and living with their own world.
I think therefore that the recent editorial in BJOT by Sakellariou et al (2008) is very pertinent to our cohorts. They are discussing the importance of occupational therapists getting more involved - not just in their own world - but in aspects of the wider world about them. That as a profession we need to become much more political in our outlook, ensuring that we can "maximise the potential of our impact" by using "adaptable and transferable skills to help (them) navigate an unknown and rapidly changing terrain".
It is possible that the students we have inducted this week - both those undergraduates embarking on a new career and those already experienced practitioners on the MSc programme may indeed be preparing to work in areas that require them to develop and utilise this wider perspective as the profession continues to create areas for emerging practice and extending boundaries. We look forward to supporting you all through this steep learning curve and through the transitions to come.

(the link above is only available to COT members)
Authors: Sakellariou, Dikaios; Pollard, Nick; Kronenberg, Frank Time to get political BJOT Vol 71 No 9 p359

Saturday, 13 September 2008

OT raps and virtual worlds.....

We have recently found this video on Youtube called OT rap by OTKelekea. Having played it to most of the team over a lunchtime we were all impressed with the content, professional language used and of course the singing. The lyrics can be found here too (just go to the right hand box once at the link and click on more info).Have a listen and let us know what you think.

In addition, as part of the MSc Advanced Occupational Therapy we are intending to use Second Life in a few different way. I found this youtube video re Jefferson OT that I think gives a flavour of what can be done. Have a look when you can and then watch this space for our own forays into this virtual world!!

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

First Guest Blog Post.....Rights to Privacy

Our first post from a guest blogger comes from healthskills. She has recently left a post on her blog re issues of rights to privacy and consent to disclose and has requested a wider debate across the world. I have cited a small part of her post (linked here) to catch your thoughts. Some comments on her post already offer how we may approach this in the UK with reference to Caldicott and Data Protection etc.

"Along with the right to privacy is the responsibility to adequately disclose information. Sometimes people are completely unaware of the need to tell us something, sometimes they choose not to tell us something, sometimes they deliberately mislead us. Just as it’s important to know about someone’s cardiac status before we begin reactivation, we also need to know about a history of self harm or delusional behaviour or serious depression.
Who is being protected by selective disclosure of health information? Is it really in the patient’s best interests? Is it in the best interests of the community? Is it in the best interests of the health care provider? And again, why is mental health information dealt with differently from other health care information?"

Healthskills would be keen to know what yout think, how your practice may be aided or frustrated by these and similar issues. You can add you comment here or link directly to her post and offer comment directly. Any thoughts?