New Zealand Practice Foundations from the NZAOT Archives

By Gordon, Beth | New Zealand Journal of Occupational Therapy, September 2006 | Go to article overview

New Zealand Practice Foundations from the NZAOT Archives


Gordon, Beth, New Zealand Journal of Occupational Therapy


Evidence-based parallels: 1948-1960

Key words: Home-based services, clinical team, practice development, meaningful activities

Reference: Warren, Mrs J. (2006). Auckland Domicilary Patients' Scheme. New Zealand Journal of Occupational Therapy, 53(2), 32. (Reprinted from Newsletter Journal, Vol 7, July 1953).

Auckland Domicilary Patients' Scheme

The Domiciliary Patients' Scheme has now been in now been in operation for over a year and has reached the stage of establishing itself by proving quite successful. There is an average of 28 patients on treatment, most of these being visited once a week, while the remainder once a fortnight. Some of the latter could be visited more often but through lack of transport it has been found impossible to do this.

To commence with the District Nurses helped considerably by providing transport in conjunction with their own round of patients. Occasionally now a new patient living in an "awkward area" is visited for the first time with the district nurse. Other than that all of the visiting is done by travelling by tram, bus and a considerable amount of walking.

Amongst the different types of illnesses treated, the more common are rheumatoid arthritis, hemiplegia, epilepsy, disseminated sclerosis, and congestive heart failure. Also a number of patients convalescing after operations are referred to us after discharge from any of the Public Hospitals. Quite a number of patients are referred by the District Nurses, and some by doctors in private practice.

Providing that it is within their scope, most of the patients try all of the usual crafts. One patient in particular supplies all her friends and family with Christmas and birthday presents from her selection of crafts. She has often remarked that without this work, life would not be worth living.

Comments: Mrs Warren nee Beatrice Thexton was well known to Sunny Riorden who was appointed to the domiciliary position next.

Researcher: Beth Gordon

Beth Gordon (Master of Public Health) Health and Disability Advisor

Address for correspondence: huntingtonsakld@xtra.co.nz

A Short History of Occupational Therapy in New Zealand

Key words: History, service development, education, professional organisation.

Reference: Rosser, Joyce K. (2006) A Short History of Occupational Therapy in New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Occupational Therapy, 53 (2), 32-33. (Reprinted from Occupational Therapy, Vol 11, No 4, December 1956).

No history of Occupational Therapy in New Zealand can be considered apart from the development of the country itself. The geography, the British tradition, the distribution of population, the development of health Services and the growth of the "Welfare Sate" all have influenced the establishment of Occupational therapy in New Zealand and made some aspects of our profession unique to this country.

A need is felt. The earliest date of an official establishment including anything approximating to occupational therapy of which we have a record is in 1915 of a convalescent hospital for returned servicemen. 'In the Queen Mary Hospital, Hanmer, Christchurch, NZ., craft work for patients (i.e. rug-making, basket work, wood carving etc.) was commenced by the Officer-in-charge simultaneously with the establishment of the hospital in 1915'.

In Mental Hospitals members of women's voluntary organisations taught the patients various handcrafts. Artisans took charge of small groups of patients in bootmaker's, upholsterers' and paint shops. The farm, gardens, household tasks and laundry employed a great number of patients. This was an acknowledgement of the value of occupation for mental hospital patients.

A beginning is made. The first qualified Occupational therapist arrived in January 1940 (New Zealand being at war) alien to these conditions bringing with her ten pound ($30) of equipment.

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