Occupational Therapy


The Occupational Therapy department is the oldest Occupational Therapy department in Ireland. It is situated on the ground floor of the hospital opposite St. Mary’s Ward. The department was upgraded and relocated in 2006 and now boasts a specialised splinting area, an upper limb training area, an activities of daily living assessment area including a kitchen, a paediatric treatment room, a practice bathroom and a group education room.

Occupational Therapists assess and treat patients (adults and children) being admitted for elective surgery or treatment. The aim is to enable people to achieve as much as possible for themselves and to do the things that are important to them. Occupational therapists work with people who may have physical, mental or social problems, either from birth or as a result of an accident, illness or ageing. They are aware of the impact on people’s lives and their ability to participate in society.

Occupational Therapists discuss any personal important issues with regard to how patients will manage their everyday activities of daily living within their home environment such as, washing, dressing, getting around indoors and outdoors, bathing, preparing and eating meals, or participating in work, school or leisure activities.

These tasks may be difficult due to illness or following surgery.  The Occupational Therapist assists patients to become as independent as possible to enable them to be safe at home after leaving hospital.

Summary of Services Provided

  • Specialised splinting service
  • Hand assessment
  • Scar & oedema management
  • Upper limb retraining
  • Rheumatology service including education, joint protection, energy conservation, advice and prescription of adaptive equipment;
  • Activities of daily living assessment
  • Seating assessment & advice
  • Wheelchair assessment and training
  • Kitchen assessment
  • Functional assessment including legal reports
  • Paediatric assessment
  • Hoist training

All of the above services are available to any patients attending our isolation ward as a result of infection. We have a separate rehabilitation room for these patients within the hospital isolation ward.

The specialised splinting service available in Cappagh National Orthopaedic Hospital is provided by experienced therapists and is available to people of all ages, including children, who require assessment and provision of short term splintage.  We treat patients with a diverse range of conditions.  This can be as inpatients, outpatients, private patients and directly from General Practitioners.

Within the Splintmaking service, there is an emphasis upon the core skills of assessment, treatment intervention and evaluation. Joint working with the multi disciplinary team ensures that the splint fitted is appropriate to the diagnosis and that functional needs and occupational goals are addressed. All patients will be individually assessed and following this, a sound clinical decision regarding the most appropriate splint will be provided.

The occupational therapy department has produced some educational material available to purchase.  The items include Total Hip Replacement (THR) and Total Knee Replacement (TKR) DVDs, educational booklets on THR, TKR, Total Elbow Replacement, Metacarpophalangeal Replacement and Hip Resurfacing.

We also run a liaison project with our community care colleagues in the local area for all hip and knee replacement surgery patients. This project includes a home assessment for the patients and prescription and fitting of the relevant adaptions prior to the patient’s admission for the surgery. This project reduces the length of stay for this client group and eliminates delayed discharge from the hospital due to unavailability of required equipment for safe functioning at home.

The occupational therapy department accepts referrals from in house surgeons and consultants and local general practitioners.

The occupational therapy department also has student therapists on placement from Trinity College Dublin, University of Limerick, University of Ulster and other UK colleges on request. We also have transition year students on observation placement.

The department runs its own in-service training for all Occupational Therapy staff. We are involved in the school of nursing training programme for Health Care Assistants

Hours of Service

Monday – Friday: 8.00am – 4.30pm

Contact Information

Ms Ruth Kiely
Therapy Services Manager
Phone: +353 (1) 814 0322
Email:  ruth [dot] kiely [at] cappagh [dot] ie

Mission Statement

We are inspired by the love of Catherine McAuley and the Sisters of Mercy.

We strive to Care for all patients with excellence, Cherish the uniqueness of each person and Treat them with compassion, love and integrity.

We are constantly challenged to meet the needs of our times in all aspects of care, through ongoing education and research.