RCOT Care homes and equipment guide imageProviding occupational therapists (OTs) with “clear-cut” guidance on the assessment and provision of specialist equipment in care homes, the Royal College of Occupational Therapists (RCOT) has launched a new guide – ‘Care homes and equipment’.

The new guidance will outline principles for the assessment, maintenance and provision of equipment for residents of care homes, assisting OTs with the decision-making process.

Importantly, the guide places the person being assessed at the centre of all the planning, decision-making and equipment provision, focusing on their wants and needs. It uses case studies to highlight a number of standards of practice to help prioritise the importance of the person’s wellbeing in the decision-making process.

Commenting on the report, RCOT Lead Professional Adviser Karin Orman said: “This is a really important guide. Current legislation does not provide clear-cut answers concerning the provision and funding of specialist equipment in care homes and this guide will give direction to everyone involved in the process.

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“The right piece of equipment can make a life changing impact to a person’s life in a care home and this guide will help everyone involved with providing and maintaining equipment as easily as possible. Occupational therapy is all about person centred care and these principles place the person at the heart of the planning, decision-making and provision of equipment.”

The guide also encourages a number of standards to be met when discussing the provision of equipment in care homes, such as: care home residents should have the same access to a needs-based assessment for equipment as any other resident in their area, and the focus of the planning and provision of equipment to care homes starts with the residents’ needs, taking into account their goals and outcomes.

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