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Occupational Therapy Splintmaking service

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Level 1, main hospital, Royal Derby Hospital
(The nearest entrance is the main entrance or entrance 9)


Occupational Therapy 
The College of Occupational Therapists (2006) describes Occupational Therapy as: 
‘A profession that assists people of all ages to achieve health and lifestyle satisfaction through improving their ability to carry out the activities that they need or choose to do in their daily lives.' 

The definition of a splint and an orthotic device is often confused and their differences are sometimes unclear. 
A splint can be described as an external device to support, protect, aid healing or promote function. It may be pre-fabricated or custom made and is usually provided for acute / short term or frequently changing conditions. 

An orthotic device is an external device designed to offer longer-term support or correction usually for chronic biomechanical disorders.


Patients are referred via trauma and orthopaedics, rheumatology, the Emergency Department, medicine, oncology, the pain clinic, surgical services and a small number from paediatrics. 

We accept GP direct access referrals and a limited number of referrals from the community e.g. district nurses, community therapists.

What the splinting process involves 


Identification of problem by consultant/GP

Referral sent to occupational therapy splintmaking workshop

Assessment (physical, psychological, functional and environmental considerations) and identification of aims of treatment

Splint Manufacture

Follow up (if required)

Discharge (referral on as appropriate)


Within the splintmaking workshop, there is an emphasis upon the core skills of assessment, treatment intervention and evaluation. Joint working with the multi disciplinary team ensures that the splint fitted is appropriate to the diagnosis and the functional needs/occupational goals are addressed. 

All patients will be individually assessed and following this, a sound clinical decision regarding the most appropriate splint will be provided.

Other Information

Referrals may be:

- in writing/fax, e.g. GP letter/referral from clinics
- by telephone, with supporting written information 

Standard referral information 
Patient details - name, address, date of birth, GP, telephone number, hospital number
Date of referral
Splint requested - position/restrictions/level of support required (as applicable)
Diagnosis/relevant problems
Weight bearing status (if applicable) and wearing regime
Carer support/home situation 

Patients attend directly from the wards/outpatient clinics. GP patients and private patients attend on an appointment basis. Home visits can be carried out if the journey in to hospital would compromise the patient's condition. We do not accept self referrals.

Visits to the East Midlands Nuffield Hospital and home visits are provided according to need. Due to the specialised equipment needed for splinting, patients are encouraged wherever possible to attend the department for assessment and treatment. 

Opening Hours

Monday - Friday 8.15am - 4.30pm 

Tel: 01332 787291 - Voicemail available for out of hours calls.