Community Occupational Therapy with Mentally Handicapped by Debbie Isaac

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By Debbie Isaac

The philosophy of normalization and advertising of the plight of kids and adults with psychological handicaps has drawn extra public realization in recent times. Governments in a few international locations have embarked upon guidelines concerning the dosure of associations, movement­ ment of individuals with psychological handicaps again into the group, and improvement of community-orientated programmes, even if their purposes for this can be economically, instead of ideologically, stimulated. Occupational therapists have moved into the group, besides different well-being execs, as a way to arrange neighborhood companies for individuals with psychological handicaps. my very own event of operating in a multidisciplinary workforce in significant London for 2V2 years, supporting adults with psychological handicaps to maneuver out of an establishment, has been a resource of motivation to write down this e-book. the quantity of written fabric on hand at the occupational remedy method of re cost and de­ institutionalization is proscribed, compared to the large quantity of data written by way of, and for, different practitioners. also, the variety of texts written via and for occupational therapists with this dient crew are few. regardless of very good aid from OT colleagues, I skilled substantial frustration attempting to outline and practice my function, now not helped through a scarcity of texts to attract on.

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Hostel, small group horne, wardencontrolled flat). g. Humphreys, Lowe and Blunden, 1984; Freedman, 1988b). Although taking a very broad approach and gathering information from carers and relatives as weH as the dient, those approaches do not involve direct observation of the dient in performing any tasks noted. A better approach is that of Cassidy et al. (1986) based on the STAR profile (Williams, 1982) which involved observing dients in the performance of tasks. Important in the assessment and gathering of information for planning is the speed by which it can be done and the facilities available for assessment.

Community teams facing these difficulties should consider employing a worker whose job is to liaise with various wards and hospital staff, to keep track of changes, and keep the staff informed of the community developments. This person could also keep close contact with those residents who don't have community care workers involved 39 INSTITUTION TO COMMUNITY with them, and to collect important information from staff prior to their departure. Time spent liaising between the hospital and community could enable closer links to develop between the two which could be invaluable to work with residents, due to move.

Institutionalization Numerous writers have pointed to the importance of lack of community contact in the process of institutionalization (Barton, 1956; Goffman, 1961; Sommer and Osmond, 1973). This can result in the 'loss' of friends and relatives, and of the knowledge and skills necessary for social interaction and use of community facilities. Institutionalization has been described as an 'iatrogenic (physicianinduced) disease' (Brody, 1973), manifested in people in long-stay hospitals by depersonalization, dependence, low self-esteem, lack of occupation or fruitful use of time, geographic and social distance from family, friends and cultural milieu, lack of freedom, desexualization and infantilization, crowded conditions and negative, disrespectful or belittling staff attitudes.

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