The Therapeutic Space

I would like to do more pictures here. I really would.

Let’s see if I can find a good picture of the ideal therapy room.

It should be private and clean and spacious but not huge. A medium-sized room.

This one is good, clean lines, unfussy. That sort of thing.

My idea is that it needs to feel safe and neutral and warm and cozy.

Now, when I discussed my reluctance to treat other students, the person I talked to, an experienced osteopath, said, oh, so you wouldn’t treat your family either? To which I tried to give some kind of measured answer.

I would, I have. But I want to be clear about their expectations. Also, I would like some kind of professional distance to be there. A clinic coat perhaps. A neutral room. Something that sets it apart.

Another student said, she had treated her mother but found it difficult because she *wanted* too much. To happen, I surmise.

I also want the protection of a neutral space.

So, experienced osteopath said, how do you feel about this clinic?

Ah, but you see, my grievances are manifold. (That’s not how I speak in real life. Maybe a little.)

The rooms are too large (we are currently using our classrooms because the treatment rooms aren’t ready). Try creating an intimate atmosphere in a classroom full of stuff, benches, chairs, huge windows to THE OUTSIDE WORLD.

The school has a majorly weird policy on bench covers. Majorly. The students are nowhere encouraged to even bring a bench cover to class for their own practice, never mind the school providing them. Paper is the one thing standing between the patient and a cold plastic bench. On our first day we were told that covering patients up during treatment is a matter we should approach cautiously. It would be too cumbersome to keep moving the cover around and most patients will be ok.

I have a feeling some of these concerns are about having to do laundry. The assumption seems to be that items have to be washed immediately after being touched by a patient. especially the ones that are ALSO COVERED WITH PAPER. This really baffles me. I have a very rudimentary understanding of hygiene but what prevents us from washing the towels even after WE have touched them ourselves? Are the patients summarily contagious??!! Yes, by all means, if they have a raging cold and keep sneezing or similar, I would absolutely change items but not on a patient-by-patient basis. It’s weirdly excessive and sacrifices patient comfort. In my world, patient comfort is key.

So, I’m similarly baffled by the students being so thoughtless about offering pillows. Pillows randomly turn up, in no way on a regular basis. What is this about?

From December onwards they will be charging money for this clinic. I wonder what kind of people will turn up. I don’t know how much money it will be.

Students play with their phones during the consultation. Why be there if they can’t be arsed?

Please, can they not be there for my treatment? I would really like to have a little space with just me and the patient. I love that space and cherish it. I haven’t had it here and I’m not liking that at all.

Students turning up late for the consultation. Inacceptable. No no no no no no. I had a case of myself turning up in one consultation room for a practitioner who swapped at the last minute and so ran off to see the other patient with the other practitioner in the other room. I chastise myself for a lot of stuff and this was definitely not fine. So I apologised and it wasn’t a big deal. But it seems endemic to the kind of attitude there is.

I feel old writing this.


About guardienne

I am an osteopathic student.
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