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Occupational Therapy Services

Patient information A-Z

What is occupational therapy?

Occupational Therapy provides practical support to empower people to facilitate recovery and overcome barriers preventing them from doing the occupations (or activities) that matter to them. Occupations may include self-care (getting dressed, preparing and eating meals and toileting), being productive (work, studying or caring for others) and leisure activities.

An occupational therapist will consider all of the patient’s needs – physical, psychological, social and environmental. This support can make a real difference giving people a renewed sense of purpose, opening up new horizons and changing the way they feel about the future.

Read about occupational therapy on the Royal College of Occupational Therapists' (opens in a new tab) website.

Why might I need occupational therapy whilst I’m in hospital?

Sometimes people find that they are unable to or have difficulty carrying out their occupations (daily activities) following an illness, injury, operation or due to the results of changes in life due to getting older. If this is the case you will be seen by an occupational therapist who will assess how these changes may affect these occupations.

What will the hospital occupational therapist do?

Based on our assessment of your occupations (daily activities) the occupational therapist may provide:

  • Education and advice on how to continue to complete your occupations
  • Rehabilitation whilst in hospital to work on your agreed treatment goals
  • Suggestions of minor changes to your home environment for you or your family to put in place on discharge
  • Assistive equipment which may be issued to your home address or on the wards for your family to take home
  • Onward referrals to community or specialist services
  • Working with the multidisciplinary team to coordinate patients discharge from hospital

What can the hospital occupational therapist not do?

Hospital occupational therapists cannot arrange for major adaptations to your home such as stair lifts or wet rooms – this service may be provided by community occupational therapists. You can self-refer to this service or ask your GP for more information.

The occupational therapist cannot arrange packages of care. However we may be involved in identifying the performance areas you are struggling with and highlight the need for care to assist you.

Your occupational therapist is ________________________________________

Contact telephone number: 01223 217244 or 01223 216880.

Please be aware that you will usually need to leave a message for the occupational therapist as they will only intermittently be in the office during the day.

Your rights

Information you provide may be shared with partner agencies in accordance with the Data Protection Act with your agreement.

You are entitled to withdraw your consent for treatment at any time without this jeopardising any future care.

You are entitled to a second opinion after agreement with your occupational therapist.

Addenbrooke’s Hospital is a major teaching hospital. You may be assessed or treated by an occupational therapy student, but you have the right to request not to be seen by a student.

Other useful contact names and telephone numbers




We are smoke-free

Smoking is not allowed anywhere on the hospital campus. For advice and support in quitting, contact your GP or the free NHS stop smoking helpline on 0800 169 0 169.

Other formats

Help accessing this information in other formats is available. To find out more about the services we provide, please visit our patient information help page (see link below) or telephone 01223 256998.

Contact us

Cambridge University Hospitals
NHS Foundation Trust
Hills Road, Cambridge

Telephone +44 (0)1223 245151