#OTalk 21st April – Reading as a Meaningful Occupation: Can the Books We Read Improve Our Practice?

This week’s chat will be hosted by Rebecca Crouch (@RebeccaCrouch), who invites us to consider the impact of narratives on our practice:

During a time when our engagement in meaningful activities has been disrupted, many have turned to reading, a daily activity which can be facilitated by our bookshelves, our phones (as newsfeeds, ebooks or audiobooks) or via online stores.

What this activity offers us, will vary according to reader preferences and their choice of genre. Fiction or non-fiction, romance or horror, auto-biographical or self-help, the possibilities are endless.  Publishers have even reported sales boom in novels about fictional epidemics (Flood 2020). 

Narratives are the bedrock of a good story. They are also prominent in the headlines of the news we consume, political speeches we listen to and are an essential part of our daily practice as occupational therapists. 

In occupational therapy, being able to elicit personal stories can help practitioner’s understand an individual’s point of view and personal experiences, to identify needs and preferences, and to better understand the individual as an occupational being (Mattingly and Lawlor, 2009). In occupational therapy literature, establishing narratives through assessment has been found to support practitioners to build rapport and support clients in collaborative goal setting (Apte et al, 2005), in clinical reasoning (Mattingly 1991) and is a commonly used approach in our research (Moore, 2017). 

For this OTalk, I would like to invite participants to think about the important role narrative has both their practice and in the content they consume, and in particular, books. 

  1. What is your understanding narrative and the role in plays in occupational therapy? 
  2. How important are narratives in your practice? And how do you illicit these? 
  3. As an occupational being, would you personally describe reading as a meaningful occupation?  
  4. What we can learn from narratives in the books we read and can this inform our practice?
  5. If you had to recommend a book/s to read to the other people in today’s OTalk, what would it be and why?

References

Ashwini Apte, Gary Kielhofner, Amy Paul-Ward & Brent Braveman (2005) Therapists’ and Clients’ Perceptions of the Occupational Performance History Interview, Occupational Therapy In Health Care, 19:1-2, 173-192, DOI: 10.1080/J003v19n01_13

Flood A (2020) Publishers report sales boom in novels about fictional epidemics, The Guardian, Thu 5 Mar 2020 

Mattingly C and Lawlor M (2009) Learning from Stories: Narrative Interviewing in Cross-cultural Research, Scandinavian Journal of Occupational Therapy, 7:1, 4-14, DOI: 10.1080/110381200443571

Mattingly C (1991) The Narrative Nature of Clinical Reasoning, American Journal of Occupational Therapy, November 1991, Vol. 45, 998-1005. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.45.11.998

Temple Moore (2017) Strengths-based narrative storytelling as therapeutic intervention for refugees in Greece, World Federation of Occupational Therapists Bulletin, 73:1, 45-51, DOI: 10.1080/14473828.2017.1298557

Post Chat Updates:

Online transcript from HealthCare#

PDF of transcript: #OTalk Healthcare Social Media Transcript April 21st 2020

The Numbers

2.298M Impressions
593 Tweets
70 Participants

#OTalk Participants

#OTalk 12 November 2019 – How can occupational therapists use digital technology and apps to enhance practice?

This week’s chat will be hosted by #OTalk team member Clarissa (@geekyOT), who works as an occupational therapist on a personality disorder ward in a medium secure forensic unit. After more than 10 years of working in mental health, Clarissa has recently started a new role with the secure messaging app for healthcare professionals, Forward

A few weeks ago, my GP phoned me and asked me to go to Accident & Emergency (A&E). She said that she wanted me to be seen by a specialist, who she had tried to contact via switchboard a few times without success. She assured me that she had written a letter that should help me get seen quicker, and asked me to come to the surgery to pick it up. I explained that the detour would add an hour to my journey, and asked whether she could e-mail me the letter so I could print it out. That wasn’t an option. I asked her to e-mail it to A&E, and, keen to avoid a long journey when I was already feeling unwell, I even offered to phone A&E and ask for their e-mail address. 

Long story short: that didn’t work, and I ended up jumping in an Uber to pick up the printed letter from my GP after all. 

The A&E doctor assessed me and paged a specialist. No response. He tried again. Nothing. 

“This could take a while,” he said, glancing back at the phone on his desk. 

Wishing time away, I scrolled through the apps on my phone. Apps for communication. Apps for productivity. Apps to track all aspects of my health and lifestyle. Make life easier. Save time. And I imagined how much time could have been saved had my GP been able to contact the specialist directly. (As it happens, it would have completely saved me a trip, saved valuable A&E time, and saved me cancelling half a day of sessions with my own patients)

Frustrated with the series of delays, I told the doctor that I’d been for an interview with Forward Health earlier that week. I said that the secure messaging app could have saved us all a lot of time, and explained that he could have sent a detailed message to his colleague (confidential information and all), rather than waiting around for the phone to ring. He asked if it’s secure (it is) and free (yup), and expressed his surprise that he had never heard of it before.

Click here to download the Forward app

This led me to think about how much more efficient and effective I, as an occupational therapist, could be if I had the right technology at my fingertips. The NHS Long Term Plan sets out a vision of digital transformation for the NHS. But, even with my interest in technology, I get so bogged down with the pressures of clinical work that I don’t keep up with new developments. And I’m sure I’m not alone in that. 

So, following on from last week’s research #OTalk about innovation, let’s spend some time this week thinking about practical ways we can use digital technology and apps in our work.

I’d like this to be a space where we can vent about very real frustrations, and also think freely and creatively about future possibilities. Technology is rapidly changing, so let’s not restrict ourselves to what we already know. 

Chat Questions

  • Which apps/digital technology do you already use to support you in your work?
  • What frustrations do you have in practice that could be improved if you had technology that’s fit-for-purpose?
  • What barriers limit the use of technology in your setting?
  • Do you use any apps for your own health/wellbeing/occupational balance?  
  • If you could instantly create any app to improve your work life, what features would it have?

Post Chat Update

The Numbers*

1.411m Impressions
341 Tweets
49 Participants

*Twitter data from the #OTalk hashtag from Tue, November 12th 2019, 8:00PM to Tue, November 12th 2019, 9:00PM (Europe/London) – Symplur

Have you got 3 minutes to help us improve the #OTalk website?

pexels-photo-1415557

On 25th October, OTalk will be turning 8!

What started out as small weekly chats (made up mainly of the seven founding members of OTalk) has grown so much over the past 8 years. We had almost 1,000 chat participants in the first half of this year and we now have monthly chats dedicated to research.

However, our website hasn’t aged well. We last updated our design in 2014, and a lot has changed since then. We now have far better tools at our disposal to improve the responsivity of our website and to make the content more accessible for everyone.

Clarissa (@geekyOT) is revamping the OTalk website and would love to hear from you about what you would like to see in the new version.

Please take 3 minutes to complete the survey and share it with your friends and colleagues.

#OTalk Journal Club 19th April 2016 – BJOT Editorial

#OTalk Journal Club 19th April 2016 – BJOT Editorial#OTalk Journal Club 19th April 2016 – BJOT Editorial

Date:   19/04/2016  Host: @OTalk_

Blog Post  –  Transcript 


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