Passionate about helping people and wanting to make a difference in their everyday lives, Eveliina Ollikkala decided to pursue a career in Occupational Therapy, where she said there was a range of opportunities and many different pathways to follow.
“I fell in love with Occupational Therapy because of its truly holistic lens and because of the way OTs see their clients. They put people in the centre of their care and empower them to lead fulfilling lives regardless of any challenges they’re facing. Being an OT allowed me to utilise my strengths – empathy, active listening, analytic and problem-solving nature and hunger for learning and growth.”
Eveliina joined the Clinical Team at NRS Healthcare in March 2023 supporting the Community Equipment Service in London and as part of OT Week, shared with us her Day in the Life of an OT.
9am – I start my day with a cup of strong, black coffee and check any emails that may have come in overnight. I check in with colleagues and discuss relevant updates on the progress of projects the team is working on.
9:30am – After checking those initial emails, I spend some time going through feedback from prescribers. I risk rate this feedback to ensure our Customer Service team can prioritise those needing the most urgent attention – and assist from a clinical point of view where needed.
10am– As I am responding to clinical queries from prescribers, I spot an email enquiry from a community paediatric OT about a recycled special item - a standing frame. They have a technical question, so I liaise with the manufacturer and go down to the warehouse to see the item physically and to better understand the product. I was then able to provide the prescribing OT with the information they needed and ensure a smooth delivery to the client. This is one of the aspects of being an Occupational Therapist that I love, when I can really make a difference to a service user.
11am – An important part of my job is to think about ways we can develop the service and minimise risks to service users based on trends that are prevalent in the service or other challenges. I spend time developing a form to support our technicians in clearly recording information from an initial repair visit. I schedule in a call with another OT at NRS, who can provide me with insights and support me based on her own experience working here. The development will facilitate clear communication with Customer Service teams and the prescriber. I really enjoy problem solving as an OT and being able to apply this skill to process changes or enhancements within the service is really satisfying.
12:30pm – It’s lunch time now! Today is salmon, potatoes and a side salad – I’m from the coast of Finland originally, so this meal feels like a taste of home.
1pm – I have our weekly meeting with the rest of the Clinical team: two other occupational therapists and a physiotherapist. Our manager provides us with a general business update and then we discuss the progress of projects, share any ideas, highlight key actions for the upcoming week, and get help and support on anything we need. It’s a great team and I love the support I receive at NRS.
2pm – I am asked to write a case study for an internal training session. It’s important we keep our training up-to-date and reflect on clinical questions to ensure we can support prescribers with their questions.
3:30pm – Now it’s time for a meeting with our NRS Community Engagement Lead. I was able to provide some background on what the role of an OT is at NRS, how our clinical team provides support to prescribers, and some of our process improvement projects. In the clinical team in NRS, we work with a range of departments, so it’s a great opportunity to network!
4pm – It’s been busy, and now it is time for final email checks and administrative tasks, before I am finished for the day. I tick things off my to do list, so that I remain on top of things, and to ensure I can provide updates and feedback to other departments and outside organisations on time and as agreed. I give a prescriber in the community a call as I received further information I had been waiting for regarding a query they had sent the previous day.
Every day as an NRS OT is different, dynamic and exciting, but my core skills as an Occupational Therapist in problem-solving, thinking outside the box and identifying the core issues are ones I use every single day. I’m grateful I can make a difference to both service users and prescribers at NRS, and I absolutely love my career as an OT.