Rebekah Boffa Occupational Therapist
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Rebekah Boffa Occupational Therapist Caritas Christi Hospice, St Vincent’s Melbourne 3 rd October 2013. Occupational Therapy: Supporting Choice, Independence and Quality of Life . Occupational Therapy.

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Occupational therapy supporting choice independence and quality of life

Rebekah Boffa Occupational Therapist

Caritas Christi Hospice, St Vincent’s Melbourne

3rd October 2013

Occupational Therapy: Supporting Choice, Independence andQuality of Life


Occupational therapy

Occupational Therapy

  • Occupational therapists use their skills to help to optimise the individual’s function, promote dignity and support participation in essential and valued activities. Consistent with palliative philosophy, interventions are developed in consultation with patients, family and carers and support people to live and die in the place of their choosing (AOT draft position paper, 2013).

  • “Doing” supports physical and mental functioning. Being engaged in meaningful occupations supports social relationships and enables development of self knowledge and supports self improvement (Lyons, Orozovic, Davis, & Newman, 2002).

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Through occupation we

Through Occupation We…

  • Conceptualise the world

  • Define ourselves

  • Learn about ourselves

  • Care for ourselves

  • Connect with others

  • Demonstrate our love and concern for others

  • Contribute to society

  • Connect with the spiritual

  • Exercise choice

  • Demonstrate our individuality

  • Experience mastery

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Occupational therapy1

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapists working in palliative care:

  • Support people to live in the face of dying

  • Acknowledge that death is inevitable

  • Acknowledge loss of function and the ongoing drive to be as active as possible for as long as possible

  • Help people redesign their lives and life goals (Pizzi and Briggs, 2004)

  • Provide support for physical, emotional and spiritual issues at end of life

  • Recognise the carer as part of “the unit of care”

  • Support people in being cared for in the place of their choice

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Occupational therapy interventions

Occupational Therapy Interventions

O.T supports patients to achieve THEIR goals through;

Assessment- Of Occupational Performance

Care Planning- Psychosocial care

- Home assessment

- Equipment provision

- Discharge planning

Symptom Management - Equipment provision

- Pressure care

- Fatigue management

- Pain and breathlessness

- Maintaining occupational performance

- Rehabilitation

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Care planning psychosocial

Care Planning; Psychosocial

Acknowledgement and validation of the patient’s difficulties and threatened existence can be powerful.

This requires active listening and a preparedness to be uncomfortable, to sit with someone while they cry, to discuss intimacy, spiritual and existential issues.

Acceptance, empathy and encouragement are important.

Care for the carers and family is important. They too need validation and encouragement.

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Home assessment

Home Assessment

  • Usually completed with the patient

  • A useful tool in promoting insight (patient/family), into care needs and clarifying future goals and expectations

  • Emotionally and psychologically challenging

  • Family feel empowered to ask questions they may not ask on the ward

  • Minimise home modifications

  • Understand risks of catastrophic events prior to undertaking home assessment

  • May need to take PRN meds on visit

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Home assessment for end of life care

Home Assessment for End of Life Care

  • Challenging but highly rewarding

  • Often tight timelines

  • Need to understand prognosis/disease progression

  • Carers take the opportunity to ask all manner of questions

  • Interventions include; counselling, education, exploration of issues relating to carer fatigue and degree of risk the individual/family are prepared to accept, prescription of equipment (hosp. bed, transporter commode, hoist wheelchair, pressure care equipment, call systems)

  • Choose the room for delivery of care

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Equipment what does it mean

Equipment – What does it mean?

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Discharge planning what to consider

Discharge Planning – What to consider?

  • Avoid Friday discharges!!!!!

  • Refer to Community Palliative Care

  • Shared care - RDNS and Pall Care Provider

  • Council services and PCA

  • Alarms

  • Trial discharge/overnight leave

  • Planned Respite

  • Buying in private supports and services

  • Equipment and funding

  • Access to allied health follow-up

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Symptom management pressure care

Symptom Management; Pressure Care

As individuals with pressure care problems frequently experience limitations in function and restrictions to their participation in meaningful occupation, pressure care is a core occupational therapy concern. (Macens, Rose, & Mackenzie, 2011)

  • Best managed by a multidisciplinary team

  • High personal and social cost

  • Education of patient and family

  • Provision of equipment for seating surfaces

  • Maintenance of occupational performance

  • Education of nursing staff

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Fatigue

Fatigue

Fatigue is one of the most commonly reported symptom in palliative care and can have a profound impact on quality of life. It is multidimensional and impacts the function, cognition and affect of the individual.

Management of fatigue should be multidisciplinary:

  • Education on Sleep Hygiene and the nature of fatigue

  • Encourage exercise

  • Modify activity patterns and task simplification

  • Working out priorities

  • Encourage nutrition and hydration

  • Validate experience and acknowledge effort

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Pain and breathlessness

Pain and Breathlessness

  • Pain

  • Education

  • Activity modification

  • Equipment

  • Comfort

  • Breathlessness

  • Education

  • Relaxed breathing

  • Activity modification

  • Equipment

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Maintaining occupational performance why is it important

Maintaining Occupational Performance - why is it important?

  • People in the palliative phase have diminished reserve and capacity to regain function

  • Care needs increase with occupational decline

  • Progressive debility and dependency is a cause of distress for many people with advanced cancer (Cheville, 2001)

  • Dependence impacts quality of life, it impacts relationships and sense of self

  • Palliative patients identify rehabilitation goals (Schleinich, et al, 2008)

  • Functional decline can lead to longer inpatient admission

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Why does decline in occupational performance occur

Cancer disease and co-morbidities

Cancer treatments and side effects

Occupational disruption

The hospital environment

Our focus on comfort

In 2011 a quality project explored inpatients sitting out of bed (SOOB) for lunch;

Confirmed clinically observed low rate of SOOB – 53%

29% of patient’s with an AKPS of 40 SOOB for lunch

50% of patients for discharge planning SOOB

Why does decline in Occupational performance occur?

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


What does a program which aims to support occupational performance look like

Requires a ward culture where there is “buy-in” from all members of the team

Strategies are in place to support orientation

Patients are encouraged to participate in self care

Encouraged to dress

Encouraged to sit out of bed for meals and other periods during the day

Encouraged to be mobile and engaged in meaningful activity

What does a program which aims to support occupational performance look like?

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Occupational performance in action

Occupational performance in action….

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Rehabilitation

Rehabilitation

  • People have rehabilitation goals

  • People feel less sense of abandonment and a greater sense of control (Bellchamber & Grousy, 2004)

  • Participation has its own reward

  • Rehabilitation possibilities can be overlooked

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Case study peter

Case Study – “Peter”

  • Acute Admission:

  • MSCC

  • Surgery

  • Radiotherapy

  • Pain Management

  • Community:

  • Pressure care

  • Equipment

  • Community access

  • Rehabilitation:

  • OT and PT

  • OT Home assessment

  • Palliative Care:

  • Assessment

  • Symptom management

  • Seating

  • Pressure care

  • Education

  • Discharge planning

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Insights

OT plays a significant role across the care continuum

Diversity of OT role

Patients require access to allied health as they deteriorate

Despite advanced disease, patients have rehabilitation goals

Without access to allied health, patients are at risk of premature admission to residential care

OT is instrumental in supporting people to exercise choice, achieve independence and best possible quality of life until death

Insights

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Rewards and challenges

Rewards and Challenges

  • Rewards

  • Discharge against the odds!

  • Assisting in the achievement of patient goals

  • Being part of the journey to acceptance

  • Promoting a “good death”

  • The honour of being part of the journey

  • Challenges

  • Working backwards

  • Conversations around death and dying

  • Regularly seeing and interacting with distressed families

  • Connecting but being able to detach

  • Symptoms that are difficult to treat

  • Rapid deterioration

  • Predicting the course/prognosis

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


What are the challenges for occupational therapists

To generate understanding of our role as more than equipment prescribers and discharge planners

To lobby government and service planners for equity in access to occupational therapy for all people receiving palliative care, across Australia

To remind the broader health community of the fact that many people receiving palliative care have rehabilitation goals

Identify outcome measures and undertake research to demonstrate the effectiveness of our interventions

What are the Challenges for Occupational Therapists?

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


What are the challenges for the palliative care community

To remember that people with advanced disease, in the final stages of life value the opportunity to experience independence, exercise choice, demonstrate care, experience mastery and to have access to rehabilitation services which enable them to live until they die

Reflect on practice to ensure that structures, systems and delivery of care do not adversely impact occupational performance

Speak with people about their rehabilitation goals

When planning services, include adequate allied health resource allocation

What are the Challenges for the Palliative Care Community?

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


References

References

Australian Occupational Therapy Association Oncology and Palliative Care Special Interest Group Submission to the Senate Committee Inquiry into Palliative Care Services in Australia. (2012).

Australian Occupational Therapy Association Draft Position Paper (2013) Occupational Therapy in Palliative Care

Belchamber, CA., & Grousy, MH. (2004). Rehabilitative Care in a Specialist Palliative Care Day Centre: a Study of Patient’s Perspectives. International Journal of Ther Rehabilitation 11: 425- 434

Cheville, A., (2001). Rehabilitation of Patients with Advanced Cancer, Cancer Supplement, Vol. 93, No. 4, 1039 – 1048.

Frost, M. (2001) The Role of Physical, Occupational and Speech Therapy in Hospice: Patient Empowerment. American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Care , Vol. 18, No. 6, 397 - 402

Lyons, M., Orozovic, N., Davis, J ., & Newman, J. (2002)., Doing-Being-Becoming: Occupational Experiences of Persons with Life-Threatening Illnesses. American Journal of Occupational Therapy Vol. 56, 285 – 295.

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


References1

References

  • Macens, K., Rose, A., and Mackenzie, L. (2011). Pressure Care Practice and Occupational Therapy: Findings of an Exploratory Study. Australian Occupational Therapy Journal, Vol. 58, 346-354.

  • Morgan,D. & White, K., (2012). Occupational Therapy Interventions for Breathlessness at the End of Life. Current Opinion Supportive and Pallliative Care, Vol. 6, 138 – 143.

  • Pearson, E., Todd, J., and Futcher, J, (2007) How can Occupational Therapists Measure Outcomes in Palliative Care? Palliative Medicine , Vol. 21, 477 – 485.

  • Pizzi, M. & Briggs, R. (2004). Occupational and Physical Therapy in Hospice; the Facilitation of Meaning, Quality of Life and Well Being. Topics in Geriatric Rehabilitation, Vol. 20, No. 2 , 120 – 130.

  • Wilcock, A. (1998). An occupational perspective of health. Thorofare, NJ: Slack.

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


Occupational therapy supporting choice independence and quality of life

Occupational Therapy: Supporting independence, choice and quality of life


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