Hannah Elson

Everyday varies! It usually starts with a handover
to colleagues, covering assessments of client’s
functional ability on the ward, including washing and
dressing, preoperative home visits to clients coming in
to Jersey General Hospital for elective joint surgery and or
home visits with clients to assess their ability in their own home environment. My current caseload includes enabling clients who have had traumatic injuries and minor and major surgical procedures. Occupational Therapists work closely with the multidisciplinary team. It is important to realise that I work in one department, another team would have a completely different day. My colleagues across Health and Social Services are within rehabilitation, the neurological services, paediatrics, and mental health.

What do you think are the three most important skills to succeed in your career area?
Communication, being very organised and the ability to quickly build therapeutic relationships with clients.

Was this something you planned to do or did you change direction at any point in the past? If so, what was that and was it easy to do?
Luckily, I always knew what I wanted to do when I left school. Prior to this I had been thinking about working within health care and was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to complete some work experience in Occupational Therapy. This short placement provided me with the passion to work in this area.

What do you love most about working in your career area?
Working very closely with clients and seeing them achieve small goals which add up to a very much larger picture. I get great satisfaction from enabling clients to complete daily tasks which others take for granted.

Are there any negative aspects of working in your career area that people considering it should be aware of?
One negative aspect, unfortunately, is that not every client makes a recovery and that we are sometimes involved in end of life care. This can be very sad, but together with our multidisciplinary colleagues, we are able to have some positive input with the client/family to support their final days and their wishes.

What training / qualifications did you undertake for your current role or are you currently undertaking?
Occupational Therapy BSc at Oxford Brookes University.

Is there any other information that would be of interest to someone thinking of this career?
Occupational Therapy considers the whole person and their functional abilities from how they manage at home to specialist seating, to returning to work following a stroke. We work with people of all different ages and conditions. Come and join
us and find out more about what Occupational Therapy is. We are spread across community and inpatient settings and our role is so diverse. It might just be the career for you!

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