Our Physiotherapists and OTs aim to focus on enablement and self-management where possible. They will work with you to set goals and help you gain independence through self-management strategies, building confidence and increasing your sense of wellbeing. They can also support you with any concerns you may have relating to your illness and individual situation.
Initial assessment session
Due to the current situation with coronavirus, your initial contact with the team is likely to be a telephone consultation, whereby the Therapist will gather details of your history and gain understanding of your problems and goals.
After this, they will discuss with you, whether it is possible and appropriate to continue appointments via telephone, video calls or email. Face to face visits may be made if deemed appropriate and necessary: if this is the case the risks will be assessed for both you and the therapists and appropriate guidance will be followed.
Areas of focus
The team will support and help you to manage your symptoms and functional activities, taking into account any medicines or treatments that you may have been prescribed. There is a focus on education, teaching and non-pharmacological strategies, which can be implemented into your everyday routine.
They may support you on areas such as breathlessness, fatigue, anxiety, pain, relaxation, muscle strength and/or exercise, mobility, reducing the risk of falls, poor sleep, personal care and leisure activities, and maintaining your independence.
Assessment of your living environments may additionally be offered, to help prevent falls and to ensure you can physically achieve daily activities and goals. This may involve ordering equipment through our community equipment store. In the current climate visits to patient’s homes will need to be risk assessed, and/or it may be necessary for a referral to be made to the community rehab Physiotherapist or OT to complete these aspects.
The impact of COVID-19
Usually support is provided both in people’s own homes and at the Hospice. However, due to government guidance on the coronavirus pandemic, the team has had to respond and adapt the way in which they work.
The team continue give face to face support to people on our Inpatient Unit, following protocols on social distancing and PPE.
For Living Well services, the team is running exercise and symptom management groups in both the virtual and face to face programmes and can also offer one to one appointments via either route.
With community-based patients being supported in their own homes, face to face contact is being minimised wherever possible by offering telephone, video and email appointments and advice. However, where there is a need for a face-to-face visit, these will still be undertaken following a risk assessment and appropriate PPE will be worn.
Gary, after attending the HOPE programme
Creating small goals makes me feel invigorated and gives me a huge sense of achievement and satisfaction. I think it is important to recognise your achievements and give yourself a little reward, whether that’s a small piece of chocolate or having a coffee with a loved one, whatever is important to you.
What type of sessions do you offer?
The team provides support on a one-to-one basis, or within a group.
Groups are run as part of the Hospice’s virtual Living Well programme, including sessions covering symptom management and the HOPE (Help to Overcome Problems Effectively) programme, as well as exercise groups.
These are run regularly and are a great opportunity to exchange valuable knowledge and share tips with others in similar situations.
When and where will sessions take place?
Before the coronavirus pandemic and lock-down, the team were able to see people either at the Hospice (hosting some sessions in the Living Well lounge or our Physiotherapy Gym) or within their own homes, depending on their individual circumstances.
However, due to the current situation with coronavirus, we are providing support via telephone or video calls, wherever possible. We are continuing to provide face to face support to patients being cared for on the Inpatient Unit and will undertake an individual risk assessment if we feel that a patient being cared for in their own home by our Community Team requires a face to face visit, from a member of the therapy team.
We are still exploring different ways to deliver our support and if you are referred to us, we will explain where we are up to with these plans and what would work for you, during your initial assessment.
Am I eligible to receive services and how can I be referred?
Our Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy services are available to patients who receive care and support from our Inpatient Unit, Day Therapy, Community Teams services or through our outpatient Pain Management Group. If you feel you or your loved one would benefit from this kind of support, please ask to be referred.
If you are not currently under the care of Arthur Rank Hospice, please contact our Central Referrals Office on 01223 675800 to discuss your needs, or ask any healthcare professional you are seeing to refer you (please note that they must have your permission to do so, and that your GP will need to be informed of any referral we receive for you).
Are your services really free of charge?
Thanks to the dedication, commitment and generosity of the local community and the hard work of our senior leadership team to secure vital contracts with the NHS, all our services are free of charge.
It will cost £10.5 million this financial year to operate our services. Contracted services from the NHS are budgeted at £6.98 million, meaning that £3.52 million needs to be raised through donations, fundraising activities and trading.
We are extremely grateful to our local community for the continual dedication, commitment and generosity they show in supporting us to meet this target.