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Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapists help people, such as those with disabilities, live independently. Occupational therapists evaluate and treat people who have injuries, illnesses, or disabilities. They help clients meet goals to develop, recover, improve, and maintain skills needed for daily living and working.
Occupational therapy aims to improve a person's ability to do everyday tasks if they are having difficulties.

As an integral component of our multidisciplinary approach, occupational therapy (OT) provides practical support to empower people to facilitate recovery and overcome barriers preventing them from doing the activities (or occupations) that matter to them. This support increases people's independence and satisfaction in all aspects of life.

What are occupations?

An occupation is any activity that we need, want or like to do to live and to look after our physical and mental health, and our emotional and spiritual wellbeing. We do occupations from the moment we’re born, on our own or with others. 

Occupation isn’t just your job or activities of daily living. An occupation can be self-care, such as washing, eating or sleeping; productive, such as work, study, caring or domestic activities; and leisure, such as playing sports, hobbies or socialising.  

We’re all different and so are the occupations that matter to us. They vary depending on our environment, interests and values, talents and skills. Our occupations also change throughout our lives.

OT is a science-based, health and social care profession that’s regulated by the Health and Care Professions Council.

The end goal of OT

Occupational therapy and physical therapy both help people to move their bodies better or more safely. The difference between them is their end goal.


Occupational therapy is all about helping people improve their ability to do daily tasks and live as independently as possible.

“With my occupational therapy, I feel strong and confident. I was treated with respect and kindness. Well done and thank you so, so much.”

Occupational therapy approach

What does OT at Mildmay involve?

Our occupational therapist creates individualised programmes that may address:


  • Daily living skills (bathing, dressing, grooming, preparing meals)

  • Cognitive and motor skills

  • Pain management and fatigue

  • Medication adherence

  • Social and emotional well-being

  • Returning to work or education

  • Finding and maintaining safe housing.

Who benefits from OT at Mildmay?

OT specifically addresses the challenges faced by patients with:

  • Complex and acute HIV-related conditions

  • Rough sleeping and associated comorbidities (mental health issues, infections, etc.)

  • Substance abuse


OT helps patients achieve real progress in their recovery journey. Through personalised programmes, our occupational therapist works alongside patients to set goals and identify areas where they can regain independence and improve their overall well-being.

The positive impact of OT is reflected in a variety of outcomes, for example:
  • Improved ability to perform daily activities: This includes tasks like dressing, bathing, cooking, and managing medications.

  • Enhanced participation: OT helps patients return to work, social activities, and hobbies they may have enjoyed before their illness.

  • Increased well-being: Therapy can address emotional and mental health challenges, promoting a sense of confidence and self-efficacy.

  • Better pain management: Occupational therapists can provide strategies to manage pain and fatigue, allowing patients to live more comfortably.

  • Higher quality of life: By regaining independence and managing health conditions, patients experience a significant improvement in their overall quality of life.

We measure success through a combination of objective and subjective factors
  • Objective outcomes: These are measurable improvements, such as increased mobility or reduced dependence on others for daily tasks.

  • Patient-reported outcomes: These focus on how patients feel, such as increased confidence in managing their condition or improved satisfaction with their daily lives.

Benefits of OT

The positive impacts OT has on patients abilities include:

  • Improved self-care and confidence

  • Increased independence

  • Enhanced ability to manage health conditions

  • Improved emotional well-being

  • Reintegration into the community outside of clinical setting.

Occupational therapy patient survey form

Occupational therapy patient survey form

Support us

NHS contracts cover roughly only 90% of our costs. Only through charitable donations can we provide a comprehensive range of services that ensure the best outcomes for our patients, funding staff like our art therapist, housing officer, chaplain and volunteer coordinator.

Your support ensures these vital services can continue. Please consider donating today and help us empower patients on their path to well-being.

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