Inpatient Occupational Therapy Services for Stroke
Occupational therapists, who are trained to help people regain their functional independence following a stroke, play an important role in the stroke rehabilitation process. In the Rusk inpatient stroke program, an occupational therapist works with each stroke patient for a minimum of one hour per day to address difficulties caused by the stroke that are impacting the patient’s ability to perform activities of daily life such as dressing, bathing, and managing a household or a job. The therapist assesses and, if necessary, treats a range of skill areas, including:
- physical skills, such as strength, coordination, and balance
- cognitive skills, such as memory, problem solving, sequencing, and ability to focus on an activity
- visual skills, including scanning and depth perception
- psychological skills, such as ability to cope and manage frustration, and
- sensory skills, such as being able to identify different textures or temperatures and having a sense of space.
Together, the patient and the occupational therapist will identify and prioritize the main areas that need to be improved in order to increase the patient’s functional independence. If necessary, the occupational therapist can recommend and help provide tools to make activities of daily living easier, such as adaptive equipment and home modifications. Patients and their families are given information about stroke education and prevention as well, and specific family or caregiver training is also provided where appropriate.
The Occupational Therapy department at Rusk includes clinical specialists in the areas of neuro-rehabilitation, vision therapy, wheelchair seating and positioning, and barrier-free design. We offer regular staff education and specialized courses to keep our therapists up to date on the most advanced treatment approaches to stroke rehabilitation. In addition, our Occupational Therapy department is conducting ongoing research to assess the value of current treatment techniques.