Madelyne Glover currently works as the Manager of Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy at Hall & Prior Aged Care, in Western Australia. In this role Madelyne holds many responsibilities, including managing lifestyle programs for consumers, coordinating therapy staff across multiple services, and designing activities aimed at encouraging the independence of consumers in residential care. She believes that the role of therapy staff is to enable residents to maintain function so they can engage in the occupations of everyday life. Madelyne believes that this is achieved by assessing the person holistically, considering the person, the environment and the occupation, and how the interaction of these impact engagement in occupations.
Madelyne has worked in aged care for the last 7 years and loves assisting residents to have the best quality of life despite the limitations caused by ageing or disease progression. Her passion is with assistive equipment and being able to improve consumer’s posture, pressure care and comfort through individualised postural seating prescription.
Postural seating equipment improves function, affect and engagement in activities in Aged Care
Madelyne Glover, Hall & Prior Health and Aged Care Organisation, Australia
Older people in residential aged care often have mobility restrictions due to comorbidities or frailty. They sit for longer, are less able to adjust their position and are less able to engage in meaningful activities due to postural restrictions.
Many Occupational Therapists in aged care recognise the need for assistive equipment for postural support, pressure care, comfort and safety. However, therapists often have limited time and access to postural seating interventions and are constrained by funding, which results in a ‘one size fits all’ approach.
Hall & Prior recognises the importance of person-centred care and how appropriate seating prescription can improve our consumers’ quality of life.
- Collect qualitative data through a case study approach to support clinical justification required for funding approval.
- Illustrate the benefits of and clinical rationale for different seating interventions through eight case studies.
- Consumers were identified through referral and observation as requiring seating assessment and intervention across five Hall & Prior Aged Care sites in Western Australia.
- An observational checklist of behaviours was used before intervention (current seating system) and after intervention (new seating system) over two 20-minute periods for each consumer.
- The behaviours observed were positive (contentment, pleasure, interest) and negative (sadness, anxiety, anger) affect using the Affect Rating Scale, hand function, engagement with others and engagement in activities.
Access to a variety of adjustable, affordable postural seating equipment enabled our OTs to trial and prescribe appropriate and individualised postural solutions. The results indicated that person-centred seating assessment and prescription has a positive impact on the consumer’s quality of life.
Ongoing education and training in use of postural seating is paramount for care staff to sustain positive outcomes for our consumers. Advocacy for funding of OT prescription and cost of postural seating equipment is required to eliminate the ‘one size fits all’ approach and enable our consumers to have the support they need for meaningful engagement.