Friday 21 July 2017

Researcher Becky Field gives presentation at Royal College of Occupational Therapy Conference 2017 and wins the 2017 Early Researcher award!

I recently gave an oral presentation at this year’s Royal College of Occupational Therapy conference, which took place in Birmingham June 2017.

My talk was called “Identifying influences on take up of a community occupational therapy intervention for people with dementia and their family carers”.

I reported some findings from the first phase of my PhD, which involved an analysis of interviews held with people with dementia and their family carers, as part of the Valuing Active Life in Dementia (VALID) research programme (National Institute of Health RP-PG-061010108). I also considered some implications for occupational therapy practice, such as how occupational therapists can work with people with dementia directly, as well their family carers, to engage them in psychosocial interventions after diagnosis. This is important as evidence suggests psychosocial interventions can benefit people living with dementia, such interventions are recommended by UK health policy, and occupational therapists are one of the key professions to provide and develop such interventions. 

It was great to meet, and listen to, occupational therapists presenting academic work and examples of innovative practice, particularly those relating to older people and dementia. The experience reminded me of the power of occupation and of occupational therapy to improve our health and well being.

I was then proud to be awarded the 2017 Early Researcher Award for my presentation! A great confidence boost as someone who has moved from clinical practice into research, and is trying to make progress with part time PhD studies.

My colleague and honorary CATCH researcher Laura Di Bona also gave an oral presentation entitled “‘Occupational therapists research engagement: enablers and challenges”, based on focus groups carried out with occupational therapists involved in the VALID research programme, delivering the intervention (Community Occupational Therapy in Dementia) and as research participants themselves.

By Becky Field, CATCH/RAT researcher, PhD student and Occupational Therapist

For more information about occupational therapy and the Royal College of Occupational Therapists please see

For more information about the Valuing Active Life in Dementia Programme please see

Or for more information about the presentations and associated work, please contact

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