Occupational therapist meets HRH The Princess Royal


An occupational therapist (OT) at the Trust had a royal appointment recently when she was invited to meet HRH The Princess Royal at Leeds Metropolitan University.

OT professional lead Mandy Graham met HRH at a special event organised to show The Princess Royal – who is a patron of the College of Occupational Therapists – around a new ‘clinical skills suite’ designed for students at the university.

The suite features equipment that the students may use in their profession along with a viewing area where the students can observe role plays of real life situations to help with their training. The area also boasts a mock hospital bed so the students can experience occupational therapy in a physical health environment.

Mandy was invited to represent the Trust at the event, which was also attended by local stakeholders, other occupational therapy leads, and physiotherapy and occupational therapy students. The visitors met with The Princess Royal before she gave a speech at the university’s Rose Bowl.

Mandy, who has previously lectured at Leeds Metropolitan University while on secondment, said: “The Princess Royal really understood the importance of occupational therapy. She asked me about the student placements we provide at the Trust, and I explained to her the variety of different learning experiences we deliver to first and second year MSc students.”

Eight OTs at the Trust have also been accepted to present at the national College of Occupational Therapists 38th annual conference and exhibition in Brighton this June. This is the most OTs the Trust has ever had speaking at the conference.

The OTs had to write a 250 word ‘abstract’, briefly describing their project and the benefit it had on service users and carers in order to be considered to present. Following a successful application, they will now go on to present their projects on topics such as ‘equipment training for OTs working in mental health’ and ‘the importance of OT professional leadership within the NHS’ to professionals in the field at the conference.

Mandy said of the conference: “It highlights the Trust’s commitment to celebrating innovation and best practice. Presenting a project is really good for the Trust – it makes us appealing as an employer and demonstrates our dedication to occupational therapy as a profession.”

To promote the role of occupational therapy, a leaflet has been designed to explain the work of OTs. This was developed by OT professional leads from a design created by three occupational therapists working in Calderdale, and is given to service users following a visit from an OT. To find out more about the work of OTs, view the leaflet.

Occupational therapist meets HRH The Princess Royal

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