12 month contract (1 Jan 31 Dec) as a public servant
22 day annual leave, 12 days sick leave, 4 months maternity leave, 5 days compassionate leave, 5 days family responsibility leave, etc. PLEASE use this responsibly!
Understand why MSc or PG studies not supported in study leave
On completion, Form 27 HPCSA, application for independent practice
Before You Leave Home
Get organised and think ahead
Learn how to change a tyre/service your car/jumper leads/AA
Gather basic information about the placement:
What is available in the area
This will help you decide on what to pack!
Have a good party 🙂
What to Pack
Important documents with copies (ID, Degree, HPCSA, medical aid docs, medication, prescriptions…)
Textbooks and Files
Camping Gear/ Map /Toolbox
Music and a good book
Comfort items (family photo’s/momentos)
? Recipe book
for Community Service
Do some background checks of hospital /facility, phone if necessary and visit if possible, chat to last CSOT?
Generally, OT HOD will make contact once they receive community service list of names
Take down contact numbers/names
Working hours, uniform, directions to dept ….
ACCOMMODATION! (Hospital or private?)
Sign contracts asap, banking forms, etc. (HR of facility)
Things to consider
Accommodation: distance to hospital, your own car?
Driver’s highly recommended, using govt vehicles may require ‘test’
Write down emergency numbers in the event your phone goes missing
Bank account, cheque account… 3 months bank statements/salary slips if you are going to take out your own phone contracts now! Parents sign surety
Register with SARS
Rental contracts, flatmates
Where to Start
Hospital tour: Facilities and Staff
Get to know existing hospital systems and protocols
Assess environment and community
Define your role as an OT (part of a bigger system)
Get to know the staff and recognize/ value their inputs/ experience
Learn from mistakes, use the opportunity (develop professionally and personally), Keep good records and patient files
Find a good support network (learn from senior colleagues and other health professionals)
Pace yourself and know your limitations (own health vulnerabilities)
Self reflect and use a journal
Take responsibility for your actions
Use your leave responsibly (good work ethic)
Keep up with CPD
Be scared to try something new (within limits)
Try to make changes too soon
Give up if you don’t succeed the first time
Have unrealistic expectations / sustainability
Be afraid to ask questions
Don’t forget that the patient is your first priority!
Support, mentorship & development
Opportunities for skills development (varies between institutions), special leave, funding, IST
Journal clubs within OT depts & or within institutions
Provincial District Forums Meetings & CPD events
National forum reps per province
MOTH communication tree (e mail)
OTASA, SASHT, OTOH, SAISI, LAOSA, other disciplines offering relevant workshops/courses
Support, mentorship & development In
Rural Rehab of SA ( RuReSA ) and ‘Allied’ Health Forums (formal platform)
Sub district rehab meetings
Basic and intermediate training is prioritised
Rural have very little journal clubs or interest groups due to the vast areas that therapists have to cover; encouraged to do online events esp with COVID, attend courses as per operational requirements
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