The first AHPsDay – Allied Health Professionals Day took place on 15 October 2021.
The idea for the day developed from conversations on Twitter #AHPsIntoAction.
AHPs into Action is an NHS England initiative. A programme of work focusing on the role of Allied Health Professionals (AHPs) in transforming health, care and wellbeing.
About AHPs Day
The Chief Allied Health Professions Officer for NHS England Suzanne Rastrick explains the origins of this annual day for AHPs: It started with a twitter conversation in April 2018, and on Monday 15 October we celebrated the first AHPs’ Day– a grassroots initiative led by Carrie Biddle, Speech and Language Therapist, and Rachael Brandreth, Dietitian.
It is a day to understand, recognise and celebrate the fundamental role allied health professionals (AHPs) have in transforming health, care and wellbeing for patients and citizens.
Read a Blog by Suzanne Rastrick
Follow AHPs in north Cumbria on Twitter here.
‘A day in the life’ of different AHPs in North Cumbria
Five of North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust's NHS Allied Health Professionals’ shared a short story about a ‘Day in the life’ of their profession. These provide a snapshot of the diversity of the roles of an Allied Health Professional and value they bring to health, care and wellbeing. This included a: Pediatric Dietitian, Physiotherapist, Therapy Assistant, Dietitian and an Occupational Therapist.
If you are an AHP and would like to share your story of a Day in the life of your profession you can email your story and a photo of yourself in your workplace to firstname.lastname@example.org
We would love stories from a: Paramedic, Art Therapist, Drama therapist, Music therapist, Chiropodist/podiatrist, Operating Department Practitioner, Orthoptist, Osteopaths, Prosthetist and Orthotist, Speech and language therapist and Radiographers. Get in touch: email@example.com
A Day in the life of ……….
An Occupational Therapist
In The Integrated Care Team: Community Rehab
Hello my name is Holly and I am an Occupational Therapist. Firstly I need to explain that I have to consider our community role as a 3 in 1 role!
Role 1: Duty – this means triaging the immediate referrals and responding to urgent calls. This might include trying to keep people out of hospital or helping get them home.
Role 2: Community which means ongoing work with people to help return to baseline or be as safe as they can be in their own homes.
Role 3: Home first – This means working with emergency staff in A&E to help get people home where possible.
All the roles merge into each other for example you may see someone in A&E, refer them to duty for follow up, you may then follow them up as part of the community role.
I love the variety. The large turn-over of work and the variety of the ‘3 roles’ means we get to meet lots of people and no 2 days are ever the same.
Organisation is the key, particularly with the ‘3 roles’ and including 7 day working means being organised is key.
I have a routine that I stick to at the beginning of everyday regardless of the role that day. This includes – coming in checking the message book, checking email and checking my personal diary. This allows me to be as up to date as possible particularly as the day can change so quickly.
I look forward to the unknown. It’s refreshing to come in to a clean slate on most days.
I enjoy the afternoons in the main office. Generally by this point people are in control of their day and this promotes lots of professional discussion which really helps to broaden your thinking.
Duty days can be really over-whelming in the morning if there are lots of referrals. It can take a while for my mind to settle on a plan.
My challenges are when referrals come into duty around moving and handling. My confidence is still growing in this area and I have that mild internal panic. The team are really supportive however and extra training has been provided, so no challenge is too big!
Everyone! Other OT’s, physio’s, nurses, AHP’s, HCA’s, Administration, GP’s or others included in a person’s care.
My favourite day so far has been hearing an update on a patient who was referred for rehab. When I assessed the patient was downstairs living with husband upstairs. The patient was low in mood and wished to get out and about. I provided some equipment and referred on to my physio colleagues. Around 2 weeks later the physio updated that the patient was now back upstairs and was going out in the community independently.
A perfect piece of Rehab!
A Day in the life of ……….
In The Integrated Care Team: Community Rehab
Hello my name is Jamie Bell and I am an Physiotherapist.
As a physiotherapist within the community team I work with patients to help them return home following a hospital admission or work to keep people at home preventing such events. I work daily with patient to return to tasks and hobbies that they hold close to their heart that allows them to live a happy and fulfilling life.
I like working with patient achieving their personal goals that they identify as things that enhance their day to day life.
A few things we need as a team are an in depth handover between all the team members to discuss the plans for the day ahead and as a way to focus our efforts in the areas that are most urgent. Communication within our team is key.
Monitor my caseload to allow me to offer the best service I can to my patients.
I look forward to visiting my patient that are motivated to return to the tasks they enjoy.
Late afternoon when our team is back in the office and we can discuss the great things that our patients have done.
Anytime it is raining and we are unable to do things outside with our patients.
A challenging part of my day is prioritising ,y workload while on duty, AS this is a response type job role we have to change our schedules frequently to keep up with the demand to our service.
Within CRS we work with OT, assistant practitioners, support workers, social workers, district nurses, GP, hospital staff and patients and patient famalies
One of my best experiences is when as a team we helped a lady who was unable to walk following a hip # Return to getting on the bus and into town to meet her close friends for coffee that has been a regular part of her life for many years.Find out more about Physiotherapist jobs on Health Education England‘s website Health Careers
A Day in the life of ……….
A Therapy Assistant
In The Integrated Care Team: Community Rehabilitation
Hello my name is Joanne Burns and I am a Therapy Assistant.
Working with Patients and their families in the community to carryout home exercise plans, mobility practice as well as tasks of daily living and personal care. To support patient to be as independent as possible. Delivery and fitting of equipment in patients homes and advising patents and families of the correct procedures/techniques on how to use equipment safely under direction of Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists and Assistant Practitioners.
Being able to accompany Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists on visits to assess patients.
Enabling patients to regain their independence and being able to see the progress they have made along the way.
We need to be organised as well as able to work in a fast paced environment. We need Rota, diary, work board, mobile phone, and good IT skills as well as good communication with team members.
Check the work board and look on EMIS for changes to Patients care needs.
Working with the team and the fact we are always learning new skills and ways of working.
We work with patients to achieve their goals.
When key working and there are lots of changes to the work for the Health Care Professional’s.
Or if they need advice about a patient we do not usually see on our work and we do not know information about the person or during times we are short staffed and have a heavy work load and feel we can’t give patients more time.
OT’s PT’s AP’s unseduced and district nursing teams HCP’s.
When a patient is successfully discharged from the service after achieving their goals.
A Day in the life of ……….
A Community Paediatric Dietitian
Hello, my name is Sophie. I’m a Community Paediatric Dietitian for Cumbria Partnership Foundation Trust. I have been working as a dietitian for two years now. I moved into the speciality of paediatrics 1 year ago. Each day starts at 8:30, however, what I do day to day changes so I thought I would give you an idea of my role.
I see a variety of different cases. Patients will be referred in from the GP, Health Visitor or Consultant. The majority of my case load is babies who have been diagnosed with cows’ milk protein allergy (CMPA). Other cases include; multiple allergies, faltering growth, restrictive diets, constipation and weight management.
The majority of the time I will see families in an out-patient clinic. These can be very busy but it’s a great feeling at the end of the appointment to know that you have helped. I also do school or home visits and I have been working on different ways to review patients which fit around busy family lifestyles, for example, setting up telephone clinics.
I thoroughly enjoy holding group education sessions, for example, CMPA group sessions which I run alongside a Health Visitor. These allow parents to discuss their experiences and give us time to go over allergy management, alternative dairy products and a tasting session (which is a hit or miss, vegan cheese is not always well accepted!).
I also organise training sessions for other AHP’s on a topic of their choice. This year I have presented on portion sizes and healthy eating, fussy eating and feeding development with a Speech and Language Therapist. The next one will take place in November and will go through CMPA management.
When I’m not busy in clinic I am based at West Cumberland Hospital where I can get on with the administration side; responding to e-mails, updating protocols, developing resources and writing up any clinic notes/letters.
My day will finish at 4:30, in the evening I will catch up with my housemate, cook dinner and do some exercise. In the summer this would be getting out on the bike but now it’s getting darker I will go to the gym 2-3 times a week after work.
Hope you have enjoyed reading this and happy AHP day!
A Day in the life of ……….
A dietitian: my acute and community role
Hello my name is Orla and I am a dietitian based a West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven. I work across both the acute and community setting and have been in my current post for the past 13 months. For me there is no such thing as a ‘typical day’ and my role varies greatly from one day to the next.
My working day starts at 8.30 am, and usually with a large cup of coffee. Most mornings you will find me the office where I will be reading and responding to emails and checking the department telephone for messages. Next, I will normally check my acute caseload and new referrals for my wards and then decide on which patients I need to see that day.
Within my acute role I cover the busy medical and surgical ward. I love the clinical aspect of working within the acute setting and find it fascinating learning about different medical conditions. Studies show that more than a quarter of patients admitted to hospital are at risk of malnutrition. Malnutrition affects every system in the body and results in increased risk of infections and longer hospital stays therefore nutrition plays an important role in the recovery and rehabilitation of ill patients. Patients often have poor appetites due to underlying conditions and often need advice and support to help them increase their energy intake. This may be in the form of advice on meals, snacks, nourishing drinks and food fortification or where appropriate nutritional supplements. As dietitians we estimate a patients nutritional requirements and then decide on how is best to meet this. Often patients may temporarily be unable to eat and drink and so they need to be fed artificially either through feeding tubes into the gut (Enteral) or directly into the bloodstream via a vein (Parenteral). These routes of feeding are associated with a number of risks therefore it is important that I work closely with ward nurses, doctors and pharmacists to determine the most appropriate treatment for these patients. Where possible I attend multi-disciplinary team meetings including board rounds, best interest meetings, discharge planning meetings and catering meetings.
If I am not in the hospital then I will usually be out in the community at an outpatient clinic, at a care home or visiting a patient in their own home. I often follow up patients that I have seen in the hospital once they have been discharge home and I am always grateful to be a part of their recovery process. Visiting patient’s in their own homes often gives a better representation of their situation and usually allows me to provide more in depth dietary advice.
My caseload is very varied and I see adults of all ages and backgrounds. As well as working with patients with/at risk of malnutrition I provide specific dietary advice for those with chronic conditions such as coeliac disease, liver disease, inflammatory bowel conditions, irritable bowel syndrome or those on long-term tube feeding in the community. Another aspect of my role that I enjoy is and delivering healthy eating educations sessions to patients as part of their cardiac or pulmonary rehabilitation and providing training sessions for acute and community staff on nutrition related topics. I am lucky to say that I have very good working relationship with my team lead and colleagues and work closely with them to develop training sessions and information resources for patients. As part of my role I also take turn to represent the department at one off events such as health and wellbeing days and coeliac fayres where we provide general nutritional related advice to the general public.
Working across the acute and community setting means that my days can very busy and often do not go as planned as I usually need to priorities my acute responsibilities over my community role. Although this is a challenging aspect to my role there are so many rewards to working in a health care related role. I love that no two days are ever the same and I am excited to learn new things and meet new people every day.
About the Allied Health Professions
Read more about the 14 Allied Health Professions.