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Scottish whisky titleAnne presented at the first conference of the newly formed National School of Occupational Health on the 26th September 2014. There were over a hundred participants from various areas of occupational health (OH) practise.
The remit for the presentation was to inform participants of the role of occupational therapy in occupational health. As the overall theme of the study day was the Food Industry, Anne chose to focus her presentation on 8 years’ experience of providing occupational therapy (OT) within the Scotch Whisky Industry.
The introduction of the session presented facts and figures to the audience, including:

  • Exports of Scotch Whisky are worth £4.3 billion to the UK and it accounts for ¼ of the UK’s food and drink exportsScottish whisky distillery
  • 10,000 are directly employed in the industry, mainly in economically deprived areas, and over 35,000 jobs across the UK are supported by the industry

Hence why it is important that the industry continue to be productive, and that the skilled www.resume-for-you.com workers in this industry are kept healthy!
Anne introduced participants to the manufacturing process from malting to aging to bottling in order to illustrate the demands of various roles and how in some areas, traditional methods continue to be used, which can be very difficult to adapt or to accommodate for impaired functional ability.
OT in OHAnne discussed the 3 main areas of occupational health in which occupational therapy provides services:

  • Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE) – focussed on job specific FCE and the importance of Job Demands Analysis (JDA) in matching capacity to demands in order to facilitate return to work and maintenance at work.  Also discussed, how the FCE can be used to evaluate workers with limitation in physical, cognitive or mental health function and that it is the clinical expertise of the occupational therapist that is important.
  • Ergonomics Evaluation – slides that illustrated real work demands were used to engage the audience in the workshop by encouraging them to identify concerns and then solutions based on principles and strategies to minimise risk and facilitate performance.  The principles and strategies can be used in any industry
  • Education and Training – briefly discussed a participatory ergonomics programme and the use of education and training in ergonomics to identify and up-skill suitable staff to engage in the programmes.

The feedback form the presentation was very positive with a number of OH colleagues voicing they did not realise what OT had to offer in OH; however, now they did!