Rehabilitation Assistant, Vanessa Edoimioya

Vanessa is a graduate in occupational therapy and joined Pembridge in May 2015 as our first ever rehabilitation assistant thanks to donations from local people. Read her story about how she works closely with the occupational therapist and physiotherapist at Pembridge to help dozens of patients every week.

How do you work with patients at Pembridge?

I help to maintain and improve our patients’ independence at home so that they are more secure in the day to day activities that most people take for granted.

I work closely with our team to get to know our patients so that we can work towards goals that are important to them. If people need further support at home we refer them on to other services. By understanding our patient’s situation and their ambitions we can be the starting point for a big change in their life.

This could be maintaining the ability to walk to the local shops, being able to use the stairs at home, or washing and dressing themselves.

What are the benefits for patients?

Helping people to take control of these important parts of their lives means they can live at home for as long as possible with independence and dignity.

A big part of palliative care is improving quality of life. While everyone we help has a terminal illness, some have years to live and some have months. We have a very patient-centred approach that focuses on about what the patient wants to achieve to make the most of the time they have.

One patient had suffered quite a few falls after treatment for her cancer symptoms. I found out that this had caused her to lose confidence in her mobility and feel very limited in what she could do by herself. We worked with local physiotherapists to teach simple mobility techniques and come up with exercises to help her regain confidence while the treatment was adjusted to minimise the side effects.

What is the most rewarding thing about your job?

I look forward to coming in to work to spend time with our patients and the great team at Pembridge

The outcomes are really the most rewarding thing. Our job can be difficult, but I always feel positive about the benefits of our interactions with patients and how we help them to be independent.

With your support, Vanessa can continue her vital work giving dozens of people every week the ability to take care of everyday essentials with confidence.