Prosthetists and Orthotists Day (7th September) is the perfect opportunity for us to share what a day looks like in the Specialist Rehabilitation and Mobility Centre (SRMC) at the Cumberland Infirmary, Carlisle.

You might come across an orthoptist to correct problems with nerves, muscles and bones with a range of aids.

Our Prosthetists create and fit artificial replacements for patients who are missing a limb or limbs.

Thank you to our team of prosthetists and orthotists who work really hard to help keep hundreds of patients as independent and mobile as possible.

Here is a little bit more detail about how the teams support patients and a glimpse into what a normal day in the office means for the teams.

Prosthetist: 20230815_144823.jpg

For this team each day usually starts with a review of the day's work ahead along with a strong cup of coffee!

Each patient is unique, so they usually start early in the plaster room shaping casts ready for when the technicians start.

When the technicians come in, they often collaborate and discuss how the complex prostheses will be manufactured. Everything is made on site at the Cumberland Infirmary, so our prosthetics are tailored exactly for every patient.

At 8:30am patients arrive. Rehabilitation goals are discussed and a plan is produced for their prostheses. Measures and casts are taken.

Throughout the day patients come in for fitting sessions. The team adjust, fine tune, fit and finish off their prosthesis. There are dedicated training rooms where the patients try on the prosthetics in private.

Throughout the day the team work as part of a multi-disciplinary team and liaise with physiotherapists, occupational therapists, consultants, and nurses. It is a true team effort in SRMC.

As the day continues, they will return to the workshop and plaster room and complete final manufacturing tasks.

In the afternoon the team review notes, place orders, and call technical suppliers.


This team assess, design and measure various devices to provide support for a range of injured joints. These devices are used to help reduce pain, improve function and/or to prevent further progression of deformity. Our aim is to improve an individual's ability to complete activities of daily life.

They see a wide range of patients from a young age all the way through to elderly patients.

Orthotic devices include insoles, footwear, ankle foot orthoses (a kind of brace to limit or assist movement in the foot and ankle), Knee Ankle Foot Orthoses (a kind of brace that goes form the thigh to the foot to help control movement) and spinal bracing.

The team prescribe both off the shelf products and fully customised devices. They assess an individual’s needs to determine the best prescription for each patient. The team decide what is the most suitable treatment plan for each patient based on their needs, wants and their goals. They work with our patients to try and achieve each patient’s goals.


Every day in the SRMC our technicians manufacture bespoke Prosthetics and Orthotics.

Our team of technician's custom make prosthetic sockets from plastic and resins. They use the latest materials such as carbon fibre to create lightweight sockets and combine these with the latest microprocessor components to create fantastic prosthetics.

Our workshop creates custom foot orthotics, shoe adaptions and orthotic repairs. Our technicians work closely with our Orthotists to create the perfect footwear onsite.

The team that keeps the whole department moving smoothly is the administration team:

They are in at 7.30am to organise the days clinics. They pack into the relevant clinic bags all the orthotic devices (foot pads and heel inserts etc) that are needed by the different teams and send them off to Workington, Penrith, West Cumberland Hospital, and Keswick ready for those clinics. Clinic rooms at the Cumberland Infirmary are prepped and sorted and then as the working day starts, they receive referrals, emails, telephone calls and enquiries. Orthoses, such as braces and splints, are prioritised for inpatients in time for the ward round.

They are a busy team with deliveries arriving throughout the day (which are then sorted into clinics) and patients call or attend to collect goods. The team also order products, make appointments and trouble shoot queries.

Towards the end of the day plaster casts are packed into shipping crates to go to suppliers so Orthoses can be manufactured.

At the end of a whirlwind day, they prep for the next day! The administration team love helping patients get the orthotics and prosthetics they need to stay mobile.