If you click on this link: equipment visual aid, you’ll find that I’ve added a .pdf resource. It’s something that I use all the time and I was updating it yesterday and thought other people may find it helpful. As you can see, it has pictures of common equipment that us OT’s use. I devised it during my first rotation when I discovered that some patients had difficulty explaining what equipment they had in their house when I was gathering a social history. On one occasion I misunderstood a piece of equipment a patient was describing and thought that they had a different aid (I can’t remember what it was, perhaps I thought they meant a 4 wheeled walker when they had a kitchen trolley). So, I devised this prompt sheet so patients (and relatives) could point to what equipment they had at home to avoid any confusion.
It also was useful on other rotations when discussing potential equipment with patients. For example; one time on the ward a patient accepted a Free-Standing Toilet Frame from me and then was discharged home. The therapy assistants then took it to the house to fit. The patient didn’t like the look of it at all and asked for it to be sent back. This confusion meant an ineffective use of time, a negetive reaction from a patient, and another trip to the home to try something else. On reflection, I mustn’t have decribed it well enough and if it had been clearer for the patient, alternatives could have been discussed on the ward. This prompt sheet removes any confusion as the patient is clear on what the recommended piece of equipment looks like and can visualise its use. I find it a really good discussion tool with patients to make shared decisions.
Of course, this may not be useful for all patient populations like low vision or cognitive impairment, but I’ve had this little prompt sheet with me for over a year now and I’m still using it, adding to it and finding it helpful. Hope you find it useful too.
I would love to hear other OT’s tips and tricks on the little things that they have found helpful for their everyday work .
See you soon.