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Job Spotlight - Prosthetist/Orthotist

Published:  02 March 2022

Did you know that it’s not one-size fits most when it comes to prosthetic limbs?

Working as a prosthetist/orthotist is one of the lesser-known healthcare careers with only two universities in Australia offering the degree.

Creating and fitting baby helmets, artificial limbs and spinal braces are all in a day’s work for Leanne Ensby, prosthetics and orthotics team leader at Townsville University Hospital.

“No two days are ever the same and just as each person is a unique individual so is every prosthetic and orthotic device,” Leanne said.

“Our patients range from babies right through to the elderly and from all walks of life.  With each patient we need to assess the injury or disability and prescribe the right artificial limb or brace to suit their life.

“In our workshop most braces and limbs are custom made by hand.  We take into consideration each patient’s needs, environment, and activity level. A farmer working on the land has very different needs to someone who is retired and takes leisurely walks.”

Leanne said building the relationship with patients, helping them with their mobility and seeing them live their lives was the best part of the job.

“Getting patients up and moving as quickly and safely as possible to help them achieve their goal is so rewarding,” Leanne said.

“I work in a small friendly team; we are a bit like family.  It’s a fulfilling job, I really love what I do.”

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