Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Sheffield Occupational Therapy Clinical Academic (SOTCA) network meeting

A meeting of the Sheffield Occupational Therapy Clinical Academic (SOTCA) network was held on 26th January 2017. The network was started by Laura Di Bona and aims to provide peer support, form collaborations and consider service developments.

Occupational therapists based in Sheffield Health and Social Care NHS Foundation Trust, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, Sheffield Children’s Hospital, Rotherham Housing Services, University of Sheffield, and Sheffield Hallam University attended. All were interested in or to pursue research, and ways to combine research with clinical practice. There was a great variety of clinical and research experience in the room with people at different stages of their careers. Some had done research MSc modules, some MSCs, some were studying for PhDs, and some had submitted applications to the NIHR clinical academic pathway doctoral fellowship programme. Sam Armitage (Occupational Therapist, Sheffield Children’s Hospital), Laura Di Bona (University of Sheffield & Sheffield Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust) and Professor Gail Mountain (Professor, University of Bradford) all gave informal presentations about their research journeys. It seemed that carving out a clinical academic career required resilience, commitment and flexibility, and that there wasn’t one clear, established ‘pathway’ to follow, the presenters had all created and responded to opportunities.  Everyone  agreed to meet again, perhaps with presentations  - possibly related to Occupational Therapy and assistive technology research, or the MSc in Clinical Research – to be confirmed.  
Any occupational therapists, or occupational therapy students interested in doing  research, service evaluation/development are welcome! You can come for general interest and/or use the group for support, for example project ideas, funding applications, conference or publication submissions...

The next meeting is planned for  Thursday 27th April 5-7pm at the Assessment and Rehab Centre  (ARC) in Nether Edge although this will be confirmed nearer the time.

SOTCA has a new website at: . If you are interested, please log on to it and register your details with our new Mailchimp account so you can be sure to hear about future work of the group. Also, please follow us on twitter 

Written by Becky Field

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