Name: Vanessa Butler
What do you do in Galway Hospice?
I am the Senior Occupational Therapist based in Galway and I support the Mayo Occupational Therapy (OT) service. I also have the role of the Quality Assurance Co-Ordinator in Galway.
Why is your role important?
Occupational therapists play an important role in hospice as we identify life roles and activities (“occupations”) that are meaningful to patients and address the barriers to performing these activities. I aim to Improve quality of life as defined by each patient and optimise his or her functional abilities as this is integral to the philosophy and practice of OT.
My role is important as it means that I have the opportunity to incorporate valuable everyday activities and offer a holistic, client centered practice alongside continuous quality improvement and patient safety in the hospice.
What is your favorite part of the job?
I love the mix that I get from my dual role. I like that the Occupational therapy service in hospice integrates the physical, cognitive, emotional, and spiritual aspects of patients’ experiences so that patients may participate in their life roles regardless of the stage of their disease process. Whereas, my quality role allows me to focus on the wider quality and patient safety aspects in hospice. Both roles complement each other very well.
What has been a highlight for you since you started working in Galway Hospice?
I have recently finished a Postgrad in Quality and Patient Safety in Healthcare and this has helped me in the development of both roles. I was involved in setting up an occupational therapy one to one virtual fatigue clinic for patients and the feedback has been very encouraging from our participants.
What do you do when you are not in the Hospice?!
I enjoy swimming, hiking and playing golf and above all else I love travelling – always up for an adventure.