Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapy promotes independence, provides rehabilitation and improves quality of life.

Contact information


Occupational Therapy Dept.

Tel. 01934 636363
Ext. 3740 for Medical and Rehabilitation Team or Ext. 3696 for Orthopaedic Team. 


What is an Occupational Therapist?

Occupational Therapists in the acute hospital setting provide intervention and advice, focusing on daily activities meaningful to the individuals that have been impacted by acute onset or exacerbation of their condition. The Occupational Therapist’s aim is to ensure their clients develop, improve, sustain or restore the highest possible level of independence which helps maintain their quality of life and wellbeing, as well as preventing further need for acute hospital admissions. 


Occupational Therapy within Weston Area Health Trust – what do we do?

Occupational Therapists work with patients who have had a change in their functional abilities through illness or disability. This may include the ability to wash and dress, manage safely in the kitchen or get into bed, up from a chair or off the toilet safely.

Sometimes patients have memory difficulties or are confused, if these problems are going to affect safety at home, the Occupational Therapist can work with the individual and family/carers to assist with a safe discharge home.

The Occupational Therapist can teach new techniques to manage tasks or provide equipment to make the tasks easier.


Where do we work?

Occupational Therapists work on many wards within Weston Hospital.
There are 4 teams:

  • Rehabilitation/care of the elderly (Uphill, Stroke Unit, Kewstoke)
  • Orthopaedic/surgery (Steepholm, Waterside, Surgical Assessment Unit (SAU) and Hutton)
  • Medicine (Harptree, Berrow, Kewstoke, Cheddar, Medical Assessment Unit, Clinical Decision Unit)
  • Rheumatology out patients


How are referrals made to Occupational Therapy?


The occupational therapy staff attend board meetings with the whole multidisciplinary team on a daily basis. Referrals are made on an acute inpatient needs basis and the Occupational Therapy team will then prioritise as appropriate. Any member of the multidisciplinary tem can refer to Occupational Therapy however it will be expected that a brief history be obtained and other services also considered to meet the patient’s needs. All patients are prioritised depending upon being medically optimised for discharged, and their ability to participate in treatment i.e. patients with life limiting conditions who wish to return home are assessed as high priority and those who are still undergoing medical tests or investigations are a lower priority.

Occupational therapy is considered when 

-          A patient is experiencing acute significant difficulties that are impacting their ability in carrying out everyday tasks and who would benefit from specialist input to restore independence and occupational performance outcomes

  • A change in ability to manage personal care tasks
  • A change in ability to transfer, mobilise from bed/ chair/ toilet
  • Change in cognitive function
  • Seating and or postural needs that require ongoing intervention/ education
  •  Adaptive/ assistive aids are required to enable a safe and timely discharge

-          Requiring longer term intervention due to significant change in areas of occupational performance (activities that make up an individual’s lifestyle)

-          Experiencing an acute life impacting condition requiring knowledge and awareness for health promotion, energy conservation and fatigue management

Those patients who have pending/ confirmed stroke diagnosis, and fractured neck of femur will automatically meet criteria and should be highlighted to the Occupational Therapy team at the earliest possible time

We will always work in the best interest of the patient and use the Mental Capacity Act to guide our practice when necessary. We are mindful of confidentiality and always seek consent before any intervention or contact with family / carers.
Any assessments carried out will be done so with consent from the patient and after full discussion as to why they are needed/useful.
Any equipment identified for provision will be clinically reasoned to ensure it is appropriate and necessary, family/friends may be contacted to assist in the delivery of equipment to patients homes