St Elizabeth’s is unique in offering access to on-site therapy and therapists. We do not need to “buy-in” therapists, and so our residents and learners can quickly access the support they need on an on-going basis without having to go to their GP or await a referral. This is an invaluable component of our holistic model of support and means that we can be reactive to changing needs.
Across St Elizabeth’s, our residents and learners have access to:
Physiotherapy works to improve our learners and residents’ physical functioning through exercise and interventions that are aimed at maximising strength, range of movement, balance, strength and motor control.
Among our service-users, our physiotherapy programmes provide support with:
- Improving balance
- Reducing pain (including from injuries caused by seizures)
- Expanding range of movement
- Spasticity and splinting
- Fitting of orthotics (devices placed inside your shoes to restore balance and to realign your posture)
- The wearing of helmets
- Improving upper limb co-ordination
- Improving motor-control
- Reducing limb weaknesses
- Reducing mobility problems and using mobility aids
- Vestibular Rehabilitation: an exercise-based programme to improve balance and reduce problems related to dizziness
- Support with Respiratory problems
- Fitness and exercise guidance.
They also support the production of accessible care plans for staff and families to follow.
Occupational Therapy focuses on helping our residents and learners with physical, sensory or cognitive disabilities to be as independent as possible in all areas of their lives. This includes providing equipment to enable and increase independence, or enhance safety.
Occupational Therapy also provides support with:
- Moving and Handling
- Postural management, including sitting and seating
- Balance and Coordination
- Fine motor skills
- Visual motor integration (communication between eyes and hands, to enable copying, drawing or writing what you see)
- Visual perception skills
- Functional communication skills
Speech and Language Therapy
Many of our residents, day clients and learners have communication difficulties – they may be non-verbal and/or struggle to make themselves understood – or have medical conditions that mean they have difficulties eating and swallowing, which can increase the risk of choking, infections and dehydration.
Speech and Language Therapy supports our children, young people and adults in two key ways:
- Helping them to improve their communication skills and developing strategies to optimise communication.
- Supporting those with Dysphagia (disorders of eating, drinking and swallowing), to help prevent hospital admissions due to aspiration.
Speech and Language Therapy provides support with:
- Speech and talking
- Social skills
- Sensory Processing, including the use of Tacpac (LINK) resources
- Functional communication (e.g. making phone calls/ emails) for independence
- Expressing emotions appropriately
- Alternative and Augmentative Communication, including Eye Gaze technology, voice output communication aids and communication switches
- Adapted diets, e.g. thickened drinks to reduce risk of choking
- Optimum posture and seating arrangements to ensure safe swallowing.
In addition, our Speech and Language Therapist will also develop new resources that are required, including picture boards, visual timetables and Social Stories, used to help develop greater social understanding.
Group Therapy Sessions:
Our Therapists run a number of group sessions which deliver the principles of one or more therapies in a fun, interactive way, encouraging better engagement whilst also helping to develop peer-relationships.
Cheerleading: develops motor skills, shoulder strength and social interaction.
Explore & Create: arts and crafts-based group, using different sensory stimuli; also helps to develop fine motor skills and independent living skills.
Functional Communication Group: developing vital communication skills for independent living e.g. sending emails, making phone calls, making complaints.
Hydrotherapy: works on developing strength, range of movement, muscle tone (Sessions held off-site).
Lego Therapy: focuses on developing functional communications skills, following instructions, asking questions and team working.
Narrative Therapy: develops understanding and use of story elements, including characters, events, locations and time.
Open Gym: drop-in sessions that offer the chance to engage in gentle exercise in a relaxed atmosphere, and can often enable identification of issues before they worsen.
Physio Skills: exercise-based session working on core physical skills, including balance, flexibility, fitness and strength.
Rebound Therapy: exercise sessions using a trampoline to improve balance, strength, motor-planning, coordination and reduce / increase tone.
Sensory Circuits: provides a range of sensory activities that provide vestibular, proprioceptive tactile (awareness of your limbs in space) and auditory feedback, and can regulate sensory thresholds.
Sensory Journey: encourages and supports communication, language skills and social interaction, whilst exploring sensory activities to pieces of music.
Snack Chat: develops functional communication skills, such as following instructions, requesting items, making choices, while completing cookery tasks with bilateral hand use.
Sport Therapy: small group sessions working on improving balance, motor planning, coordination (including hand/eye); also teaches participants to work as a team, developing confidence through social interaction.
Star Club: a circuits-based exercise sessions, working on core physical skills including balance, flexibility, fitness and strength.
Trike Therapy: develops motor skills, fitness and improves road safety awareness; also provides sensory input.
Upper Limb Group: developing upper limb strength and range of movement, and arm function skills such as pegging, spreading, writing and cutting.
We also offer bungalow- or peer-group based sessions: in one of our bungalows, where many of our older residents reside, we run a Seated Exercise Class within their living room.