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Occupational therapy in palliative care 

Occupational therapy in palliative care
Occupational therapy in palliative care

Jill Cooper

and Nina Kite

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date: 26 January 2022

Occupational therapy in palliative care aims to help patients achieve their optimum independence in activities that are important to them. The specific functional difficulties may include extreme fatigue, anxiety and shortness of breath due to advanced disease including metastatic spinal cord compression, fractures, or peripheral neuropathies. Patients may have problems with cognition and perception, body image, life role, and spiritual issues as well as physical disabilities. This chapter describes the broad range of areas in which the occupational therapist works in palliative care together with the interprofessional team. They take a key role in organizing and facilitating safe discharge and care at home, with the aim of achieving best quality of life and avoiding re-admission to hospital wherever possible. The occupational therapist analyses and assesses specific problems and provides a treatment programme or solution to help the patient remain as independent as possible, using clinical reasoning and evidence-based practice.

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