Churchill Fellowship for Shenton Park Occupational Therapist

September 23, 2014

Nicola Hunter Senior Occupational Therapist in the Spinal Unit is the recipient of a prestigious Churchill Fellowship.

Churchill Fellowships provide opportunities for professionals to conduct research projects overseas in their field of excellence.

In 2015, Nicola will travel to the United States, Canada, Sweden and the United Kingdom to investigate innovative therapy solutions which promote independence for tetraplegia patients.

“Through my research, I hope to identify different clinical practices from around the world to gain insight into how we can further improve outcomes for our patients during their rehabilitation,” said Nicola.

“Technological advancements have been fundamental to providing new and advanced treatment methods for patients, improving their quality of life and further helping them to achieve their goals.”

Nicola will examine a diverse range of treatment options used around the world, including robot assisted therapy and therapy needed post-nerve and tendon transplants.

“The priority for people with quadriplegia is regaining the functionality of their upper limbs and my goal is to explore new treatments to expand the role of occupational therapy for patients with spinal cord injuries,” said Nicola.

“I am honoured to be a Churchill Fellowship recipient,” says Nicola, “it provides me with the opportunity to improve patient outcomes and broaden treatment possibilities, which is something I am very excited about.”

Head of Occupational Therapy Helen Margaria says that Nicola’s research will contribute greatly to improving the independence of people with quadriplegia.

“The research will support the advancement of treatment options available to spinal patients,” Helen said.

“Nicola is a great advocate for patients and the profession, and her findings will benefit occupational therapy services right across Western Australia.”