Considering Assessments - The Core Values of OT

Welcome to June's  blog, the second in a series of five, looking at the core values of O.T. Last time we looked at person centred practice and what it means for you. This month, I will be looking at assessment and will be linking your reflections and evidence to the HCPC standards.

Assessment can be formal or informal, can occur once or can occur everytime you meet the client. In reality, we are assessing our client continually. This blog is an opportunity to reflect on the tools we use to do this. The debate for the profession is do we use standardised or none standardised assessments. If we use standardised assessments, how person centred can these be? In the first blog in this series we explored the true meaning of being client centred. Thinking about the assessment tools you have used this month, how client centred are they? Do they give you the time, space and opportunity to be completely client centred? When was the last time you reviewed the assessments tools used by you and/or your department? Do assessment tools gather numbers and facts at the expense of richer, personalised information which defines our profession.

They way we carry out assessment is crucial as it stands at the apex of the rest of our treatment package with that person, it's vital to get this right. Part of the assessment process must include sitting and listening actively to the client and identifying their goals for the days and weeks ahead. The assessment tool needs to reflect and record this. So if you are tempted to dismiss this as not feasible look at midwifery. They are fully imbedded in the NHS and have taken a clear stand to put women at the heart of their practice. They have maintained a clear identity, they have initiated client held notes, they empower the client every step of the journey. Occupational therapists should do the same and stand proud of the beliefs and underpinning philosophy of our profession.

What I would like you to do now is to take a few moments to reflect on your assessments this month, one which went really well, and one not so well. In relation to them, how would you rate your ability to empower the client in the assessment process? As I stated earlier, how is your practice and service delivery underpinned by the philosophy of O.T.?

Well done. You have managed to take time out of your busy schedule to review and reflect on your current practice. In relation to HCPC standards, you have identified clear evidence of how you have ensured that your assessments benefit the service user? You have reviewed your current practice and ensured quality of assessment in your service delivery.  In next months blog we will review the interventions that you currently use. So identify a time in the next month, just 30 minutes, to read and reflect on this topic. If you have any thoughts questions or queries, I would love to hear from you.


Margaret Spencer MA Consultant Occupational Therapist & Senior Lecturer   LinkedIn Profile

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