Tuesday, February 08, 2011


We have waited nearly 8 months to see the community occupational therapist...
8 months for a little girl with spinal muscular atrophy to be assessed.
A little girl with special needs.
Is that acceptable?
I don't think so!

So I was pro-active,
Bolshy perhaps,
And asked the Neurological OT to see Eilidh.
She did as a favour to our consultant.
She was lovely,
Quickly and easily sorting out initial seating and bathing problems.

Meanwhile, elsewhere...
Community OT...
"Eilidh is currently 31 on the waiting list, phone in three months, after the new year and we'll let you know where she is on the waiting list."
Not acceptable.

So the community appointment came out of the blue
And on Friday we saw a lovely OT who assessed Eilidh:
She did what she was said that she was going to do -
this always impresses me - oh! I have such low expectations...
But then...
"Now you need to self-refer to Social Work OT for home adaptations..."
Excuse me?
Self-refer?  Self-refer?
I've waited 8 months to be told to phone them myself?
You've got to be joking me?
I could have been told that 8 months ago!
Why wasn't I told this?

And a deep breath...


I phoned Social Work on Monday.
They took some notes:
They'll send out a letter telling me how long it will be until we are assessed.
But they had to tell me, they had to warn me that there is quite a wait...
Excuse me?
Quite a wait?
"But I've waited 8 months to be told to self-refer and now we have to wait for longer?"
"Yes.  But I can tell you that we are hoping to recruit more staff and that should help waiting times."

Sorry but WTF?

Why an earth is the Occupational Therapy Service in such dire straights?
Is it really just the lack of staffing that's the problem?
Is it simply that the resources, the funds aren't available?
Whatever the cause, it is not acceptable that a child with a new diagnosis of SMA was put on a waiting list of 8 months for a first assessment.
It is not acceptable that the information that we can self-refer for Social Work OT for a home assessment and adaptations is not passed on at an earlier stage.
It is just not acceptable...
And what am I going to do about it?
Let me think about this...

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