Sometimes, even with the best will in the world, you can miss out on things simply because you didn’t know there were there or didn’t know where to look.
This is what happened recently at our Independent Living Centre (ILC). A woman in her late 70s was being treated in hospital for various illnesses and she came into the ILC while she was out in Walsall, as she was finding it harder and harder to do everyday things.
There will be a representative of the occupational therapy (OT) department every day that we’re open so our on-duty OT had a chat with this lady and found out a bit more about her health and the things she was struggling with. We noticed that she seemed quite unsteady on her feet as she walked around the centre. As we have a lot of equipment installed here at the centre as part of our model home, we were able to show her some of the things that she might find helpful. She was also able to try them out then and there to see for herself how to use them and think about whether she would want any of these in her home.
As we talked to her a bit more, it was clear that she needed a bit more than just a chat, so we arranged to visit her at home and do an assessment with her. Her family realised that she needed support and had already made some changes to her home themselves, like re-modelling her bathroom to make it easier for her to shower and go to the toilet. This was all really positive and it showed that her family were keen to support her and obviously recognised she needed help, but they didn’t realise that there was somewhere they could go for advice and support to help with the adaptations and with other very simple pieces of equipment and tips on how to do daily tasks a little differently.
After talking to her about the things she was struggling with at home and going through her daily routine we were able to recommend various bits of equipment that would help her such as a raised toilet seat and a shower chair.
These are on their way to her home now and we will be checking back with her to talk her through how to use them and to see how she’s getting on with them.
Her and her family are really pleased with the help and advice they had from us at the ILC so far and now they know where to go if they ever need us again!