Who We Are

We have over 150 years of combined experience in the specialist area of hand therapy in Western Australia.

Founded in 2004, the Hand & Upper Limb Centre provides best practice therapy, research, support and training for all things hand, wrist and elbow.

Our highly qualified and experienced therapists practice in the non-surgical assessment and management of hand, wrist and elbow injuries and disorders.

Treatment methods include splinting, also known as orthoses, exercise, wound care and other non-invasive techniques, as well as joint mobilisations, stretching, and active and resisted exercises to assist in the recovery from injury, surgical operations and hand disorders.

We work closely with a variety of health professionals, including general practitioners, surgeons, physiotherapists and other allied health professionals, to develop the most suitable program for your injury or condition.

All therapists participate in regular education and professional development to ensure you receive the most up-to-date and evidence based treatment techniques and care.

Common treatments we specialise in:

  • Fabrication of custom thermoplastic orthoses, commonly known as same day splints
  • Prescription of exercise and strengthening programs for both surgical and non-surgical conditions
  • Soft tissue treatment
  • Desensitisation for sensitive scars and nerve conditions
  • Wound and scar management
  • Return to work advice
  • Management of oedema (swelling)
  • Pain management

Our mission is to provide the best hand, wrist, and upper limb occupational therapy service in Australia. We work collaboratively with all parties to ensure optimal outcomes for each patient.

Leadership Team

Anita Bourton

Operations Manager

Antony Smithson

Chief Executive Officer

Chantelle Sorgiovanni

Senior Occupational Therapist Manager (OT)

Our People

Aimee Lea

Occupational Therapist

Alison Van Der Spuy

Administration

Anne Marie De Luca

Administration Team Lead

Ben Thompson

Senior Occupational Therapist

Cassandra Di Carlo

Occupational Therapist

Claire Miotti

Occupational Therapist

Claudia Gaynor

Occupational Therapist

Dana Spencer

Joondalup Site Lead, Senior Occupational Therapist

Deearna Bakker

Research Coordinator, Senior Occupational Therapist, Subiaco Site Lead

Emily Antonovich

Occupational Therapist

Emily Sevier

Senior Occupational Therapist, Subiaco Site Lead

Evelyn Della Franca

Occupational Therapist

Georgia Watson

Occupational Therapist

Jacquie Barnes

Administration

Jasmyn Camerer

Baldivis Site Lead, Senior Occupational Therapist

Jennie Towner

Administration

Jess De Jong

Bethesda Site Lead, Clinical Coordinator

Jess McCann

Occupational Therapist

Jo-Anne Smith

Administration

Josh Stringer

Occupational Therapist

Karen Herbert

Administration

Lauren Heasman

Administration

Lok Wong

Occupational Therapist

Megan Kua

Physiotherapist

Natasha Robertson

Administration Team Lead

Rosanne Cross

Occupational Therapist

Sandra Palmer

Administration

Tahliya Norman

Occupational Therapist

Tina O’Toole

Administration

Vanessa Flynn

Administration

Victoria Bray

Senior Occupational Therapist, South West Site Lead

Yan Li

Accountant

Operations Manager

Anita Bourton

Anita graduated from Curtin University in 2003 with a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy. After initially working for a short time Perth and Queensland, Anita spent 2 and a half years working in hand and upper limb rehabilitation at world re-known Howard Head Sports Medicine Centre in Vail, Colorado USA.

Anita moved back to Perth in 2008 to work with HULC. After leaving for a short time to live in Melbourne and then run her own small practice in Karratha, Anita returned to HULC in 2014 initially in a coordinator role, then moving to Manager alongside Vicky Allbrook in 2017.

Anita is actively involved in the hand therapy community, regularly attending, and presenting at state and national Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA) meetings and conferences.

Recent achievements include co-writing and presenting a comprehensive Hand Safety, Prevention and Awareness workshop for BHP with Vicky Allbrook. She also was a co researcher and writer with Kristine Beacham presenting on “Forearm based splinting for TFCC repairs” at the 2020 Congress of the Asian Pacific Federation of Societies for Surgery of the Hand in Melbourne.

To further hone her managerial skills, Anita has completed a graduate Certificate of Business at Curtin University in 2021.

Accredited Hand Therapist (as awarded by the Australian Hand Therapy Association)

Chief Executive Officer

Antony Smithson

Senior Occupational Therapist Manager (OT)

Chantelle Sorgiovanni

Chantelle is a returning HULC trained senior hand therapist and manager of our St John Urgent Care Division.

Chantelle’s career has also included working in Melbourne with Brachial Plexus injuries including post operative management of nerve to nerve and tendon to tendon transfer. Chantelle worked post operative clinics for orthopedic surgeons to elite athletes and major trauma plastic surgeons. 

Chantelle has a passion in treating complex wrist pathology and implementing the latest neuroscience findings in hand therapy for pain management strategies.

This year, Chantelle is the AHTA coordinator of the WA division and is looking forward to fostering the education and learning of hand therapists across Western Australia.

Occupational Therapist

Aimee Lea

Aimee graduated from Edith Cowan University in 2022 with a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy.

Aimee first became interested in hand and upper limb rehabilitation throughout her university studies. This interest continued to grow during her clinical placement at HULC in 2021 which was later solidified throughout her final clinical placement in private practice hand therapy in 2022. Following the completion of her studies, Aimee was excited to be re-joining the HULC team as an occupational therapist.

Aimee has a passion for all areas of hand and upper limb, having particular interest in acute trauma and sporting injuries.

Aimee is currently an Associate Member of the Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA) and is working towards her full membership.

Administration

Alison Van Der Spuy

Administration Team Lead

Anne Marie De Luca

Senior Occupational Therapist

Ben Thompson

Ben graduated with a Bachelor of Science (Bsc) in Occupational therapy from Curtin University in 2018. Throughout his study, Ben became passionate about hand and upper limb rehabilitation and solidified his interest during his student placement at HULC in 2017.

Upon graduation, Ben spent a brief period working in a private soft tissue clinic before transitioning to the Hand and Upper Limb Centre in early 2018.

Ben is active within the hand therapy community, regularly attending Hand interest groups run by the Western Australian Occupational Therapy Association and Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA). Ben is an associate member of the Australian Hand Therapy Association.

Occupational Therapist

Cassandra Di Carlo

Cassandra graduated from Curtin University in 2020 with a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Occupational Therapy.  

Cassandra became inspired to pursue a career in hand and upper limb rehabilitation early in her studies. Her keen interest in anatomy, continuous learning and evidence-based practice led her to joining the Hand and Upper Limb Centre (HULC) team in mid-2021.  

Cassandra has been an active member of the hand therapy community and regularly attends Hand Interest Group meetings, run through Orfit Industries, HandSpark and the WA Occupational Therapy Association. Cassandra is an Associate Member of the Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA) and is working towards full membership.

Occupational Therapist

Claire Miotti

Claire graduated from Curtin University in 2020 with First Class Honours in Occupational Therapy.

Claire’s interest in hand therapy began in university and solidified during her student placement which took place at the Hand and Upper Limb Centre (HULC). Following graduation, Claire worked with individuals with disability before joining the HULC team in mid-2021.

Claire is an active member within the hand therapy community, attending hand interest groups run by the Occupational Therapy Association of WA and Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA). Claire is an Associate Member of the AHTA and is working towards full membership.

Occupational Therapist

Claudia Gaynor

Claudia graduated from Curtin University in 2021 with First Class Honours in Occupational Therapy.

Claudia developed a keen interest for hand therapy during her degree. Following graduation, she spent a brief period working rurally in a private hand therapy clinic before joining the Hand and Upper Limb Centre in early 2022.

Claudia is passionate about furthering her education and is active within the hand therapy community, attending hand interest groups run by the Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA) and Occupational Therapy Association of WA. Claudia is an Associate Member of the AHTA and is working towards her full membership.

Joondalup Site Lead, Senior Occupational Therapist

Dana Spencer

Dana graduated with Honours from Curtin University in 2016 with a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy.

Dana became passionate about hand therapy during her practical placement at the Hand and Upper Limb Centre (HULC) in 2016. After graduation, Dana retuned to HULC as a volunteer to assist with research. Dana made a big impression and subsequently joined the HULC therapy team as a full time Therapist in mid-2017. After completing her training in Perth, Dana moved to the beautiful Southwest to work in the Bunbury and Busselton Clinics. Dana has now returned to work in HULC’s Perth clinics full time.

Dana is an active member of the Hand Interest Group, run by the Occupational Therapy Association of WA. Dana is an Associate Member of AHTA and is working towards her full membership.

Research Coordinator, Senior Occupational Therapist, Subiaco Site Lead

Deearna Bakker

Deearna graduated from Curtin University in 2014 with First Class Honours in a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy (OT). During her final year of university, Deearna’s passion for OT evolved through placements at private hand therapy clinics, paediatric clinics and treating hospital stroke and acquired brain injury patients.

Since joining HULC at the beginning of 2015, her passion and drive for rehabilitation of the upper limb has escalated. Deearna has a keen interest in research and is actively involved in several research projects within HULC.

Deearna is an active member of the hand therapy community and regularly attends Hand Interest Group Meetings (run by the Occupational Therapy Association of WA) and state Australia Hand Therapy Association (AHTA) meetings and conferences. Deearna is an Associate Member of the AHTA working towards her full membership.

Occupational Therapist

Emily Antonovich

Emily graduated from Curtin University in 2022, with a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Occupational Therapy.

Emily was first inspired to pursue a career in hand therapy throughout her university studies when she completed the hand and upper limb rehabilitation unit. Her passion for this area of practice continued to grow in her final year fieldwork placement here at the Hand & Upper Limb Centre (HULC). Upon finishing this placement, Emily returned to join the HULC team as an Occupational Therapy Assistant before she transitioned into a full-time Occupational Therapist role. Emily enjoys working closely with clients and being able to incorporate her interest in anatomy into assisting client to return to their valued activities.

Emily is an active member within the hand therapy community and is motivated to continue developing her knowledge and skills in this area of practice. She is currently an Associate Member of the AHTA and is working towards full membership.

Senior Occupational Therapist, Subiaco Site Lead

Emily Sevier

Emily graduated from Edith Cowan University in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy. Emily became passionate about hand therapy during her two practical placements as a student in private practice hand therapy and at Fremantle Hospital. After finishing her degree, Emily continued to study and volunteer at Brightwater Care Group in neurology and hand therapy, before joining HULC in 2015.

Emily works at HULC’s Subiaco and Claremont clinics, runs Final Assessment clinics with our principle surgeon and is a part of the Dupuytrens clinic at HULC. Emily is an active member of the hand therapy community and regularly attends state and national Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA) meetings and conferences, as well as Hand Interest Group Meetings (run through the WA Occupational Therapy Association). Emily is an Associate Member of the Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA) and is currently working towards her full membership.

Occupational Therapist

Evelyn Della Franca

Evelyn graduated with a Bachelor of Science (Occupational Therapy) with First Class Honours from Curtin University in 2019. Evelyn became interested in hand and upper limb rehabilitation during her university studies and final university practicum at the HULC South West clinics in early 2019.

Evelyn worked in vocational rehabilitation as a new graduate assisting injured workers return to work. During this time, Evelyn gained invaluable exposure to the workers compensation system in Western Australia and various treating parties throughout the South West region.

Evelyn’s passion for working closely with clients to facilitate performance in activities of everyday life led her to pursue a clinical role, returning to HULC and joining the South West team in late 2021.

Occupational Therapist

Georgia Watson

Georgia graduated from Curtin University with a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy with honours in 2021.

Georgia has always had a keen interest in a career in hand and upper limb rehabilitation, with her passion growing during her final 8-week University practical placement at HULC’s Bethesda site. Georgia joined the HULC team after finishing her placement in November 2021.

Georgia is passionate about furthering her learning in the area and has completed many professional development courses through the Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA), American Society of Hand Therapists, and Occupational Therapy Australia (OTA).  

Georgia is active within the hand therapy community, attending interest groups run by AHTA. Georgia plans to become an Associate Member of the AHTA and will be working towards full membership.

Administration

Jacquie Barnes

Jacquie joined HULC in 2023 and comes to us with a big hearted happy enthusiasm for life and people. Jacquie enjoys talking to people and helping out wherever she can. With over 20 years administration experience in different industries Jacquie is also a highly adaptable problem solver.


She would like to add that she loves all things family, camping, running and gardening so please join her for a chat next time you find yourself in her clinic.

Baldivis Site Lead, Senior Occupational Therapist

Jasmyn Camerer

Jasmyn graduated from The University of Notre Dame Australia with a Bachelor of Nursing in 2011. While gaining experience in the health care setting Jasmyn developed an interest in occupational therapy and returned to study at Curtin University, graduating with a Master of Occupational Therapy mid 2016.

Jasmyn’s interest in hand therapy evolved from her student placements which took place in the hand therapy unit at Fremantle Hospital and the Hand and Upper Limb Centre (HULC). Following her graduation Jasmyn joined the HULC team as a fulltime hand therapist. In mid 2017 Jasmyn relocated to Darwin where she continued working in hand therapy and gained invaluable experience in a semi-rural setting. Jasmyn returned to Perth in 2018 and was welcomed back by the HULC team.

Jasmyn is an active member of the hand therapy community, regularly attending the Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA) state meetings. Jasmyn is an Associate Member of the AHTA and is working towards her full membership.

Jasmyn is currently on maternity leave.

Administration

Jennie Towner

Jennie joined the HULC team in 2016. With a Bachelor of Arts in Education, and extensive administration experience, Jennie’s friendly face and nurturing disposition makes her the perfect person to greet you when you arrive at HULC.

Having spent over 10 years in a variety of primary carer roles, Jennie recently re-entered the workplace, finding HULC to be the perfect workplace to showcase her organisational skills within a busy team environment.

Bethesda Site Lead, Clinical Coordinator

Jess De Jong

Jess graduated in 2014 from Curtin University with a Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Occupational Therapy, and joined the HULC team in 2015.

Jess’s interest in hand and upper limb rehabilitation followed a student placement in the state trauma unit of Royal Perth Hospital.

Jess is involved in clinical based research and is the site lead at Bethesda.

Jess is an active member of the hand therapy community and was a subcommittee member of the state branch of the Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA) from 2016 – 2021. Jess is an accredited hand therapist as awarded by the AHTA.

Occupational Therapist

Jess McCann

Jess graduated from Curtin University with a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy (Honours). Jess started working at HULC in 2021 as an Allied Health Assistant until she received her registration. She is currently working hard to publish her thesis surrounding the implementation of student-led special interest groups for occupational therapy students at Curtin University.

Jess’ interest in hand therapy sparked when her dad was involved in a motorbike accident and required extensive hand and upper limb rehabilitation, which Jess attended with him. Jess’ passion developed further after completing courses through WA Occupational Therapy Association and a practical placement at the fast-paced Fremantle Hospital Hand Therapy Clinic in 2021. Throughout her degree, Jess has worked in the public sector gaining skills and knowledge in rehabilitation, neurological conditions, home modifications, equipment prescription and aged care.

Jess is looking forward to continuing to develop her skills in the hand therapy field at HULC and work towards her full AHTA membership.

Administration

Jo-Anne Smith

Jo-Anne has only recently joined the HULC team. She has come from a background of working for a large health insurance organisation.  Previously she worked reception and marketing for a large multi site company which relied on a great product and excellent customer service.  Jo-Anne is very passionate about customer service and excellent on going care for patients.

Occupational Therapist

Josh Stringer

Josh graduated with Honours in his Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy from Curtin University in 2019. Josh’s interest initially sparked with a chronic injury to his hand when he was completing his year 12 studies and went to see an Occupational Therapist as he opted for conservative management, due to upcoming WACE exams. This interest became a passion as it was solidified in his final student placement at HULC in 2019.

After an initial period with HULC in 2020, he worked with Kalgoorlie Health Campus and worked across hand therapy, medical and surgical wards, day therapy unit, home visiting, community and paediatrics. Josh came back to HULC in late 2020, and has been with us since, working mainly in our Bethesda clinic.

Josh is active within the Hand therapy community, attending Hand interest Group meetings run by WAOTA, and is an associate member of the Australian Hand Therapy Association.

Administration

Karen Herbert

Administration

Lauren Heasman

Occupational Therapist

Lok Wong

Physiotherapist

Megan Kua

Megan graduated from Curtin University with a Bachelor of Science (Physiotherapy) in 2011. Megan has several years of clinical experience working at public hospitals across the metropolitan region. She first developed an interest in hand therapy when working in the State Rehabilitation Centre where Megan treated patients who were being seen by hand therapists and getting all sorts of interesting splints.

Since then, Megan has worked just over a year in hand therapy where she gained further interest in the area. Megan enjoys splint fabrication and loves to see patients make progress to achieve their best outcomes.

Administration Team Lead

Natasha Robertson

Natasha has been with HULC for over three years.  She has 7 years reception experience in various health clinics. Natasha previously worked as a qualified veterinary nurse before switching to human health. Natasha enjoys the front desk atmosphere, getting to know the patients and being the friendly face of the business.

Occupational Therapist

Rosanne Cross

Rosanne graduated from Edith Cowan University in 2021 with a Bachelor of Science (Occupational Therapy). She became interested in exciting field of hand therapy through the duration of her studies, with her passion increasing following a practicum placement with HULC during her final year of studies.

Rosanne also gained further experience in the hands field during her final placement at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital in their fast-paced hand therapy clinic. Following the completion of her studies, Rosanne was excited to re-join the HULC team, initially as an Allied Health Assistant, then as an Occupational Therapist.

Rosanne is an active member of the hand therapy community, regularly attending hand interest groups run through the Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA). She has also participated in several professional development opportunities through AHTA, WA Occupational Therapy Association, and Hand Spark. Rosanne is an associate member of the AHTA, with a goal of attaining full membership.

Administration

Sandra Palmer

Sandra has had 20 plus years’ experience working in medical admin in various roles.  She relocated from Perth to Bunbury to gain a slower lifestyle and to enjoy the beautiful Southwest surroundings. She came to work with HULC in April of this year in our Bunbury rooms. She enjoys doing her part in assisting patients as they work towards rehabilitation.

Occupational Therapist

Tahliya Norman

Tahliya graduated from Curtin University in 2019 with a Bachelor of Science (honours) in occupational therapy. Tahliya’s interest in hand therapy sparked throughout her university studies with her interest in anatomy and assisting people to get people back to their usual activities safely. 

Tahliya completed her final year practicum at The Hand and Upper Limb Centre (HULC) which solidified her interest in the area. Upon graduation, Tahliya worked in private hand therapy for a year, she then moved to the hospital setting to gain a broader Occupational Therapy experience and worked across surgical, medical, and outpatient settings. It wasn’t long before Tahliya started to miss hand therapy and is now excited to be back in the area with HULC.

Tahliya is an active member of the hand therapy community, regularly attending hand interest groups run through the Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA). Tahliya has also participated in several professional development opportunities through AHTA, WA Occupational Therapy Association, and Hand Spark.

Administration

Tina O’Toole

Tina joined HULC in 2013 as Administration Team Leader and works across both office/business administration. Tina has specialised in the field of health administration since moving to Australia from Ireland in 2008. Her calm yet efficient personality ensure the HULC systems are as well-organised as her team!

Administration

Vanessa Flynn

Senior Occupational Therapist, South West Site Lead

Victoria Bray

Victoria graduated from Curtin University in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy. Following graduation, Victoria moved to Melbourne, where she worked in the field of vocational rehabilitation. Victoria specialised in workplace assessments, functional capacity evaluations and focusing on achieving positive return-to-work outcomes for patients with a range of physical and psychological injuries.

In 2014 Victoria completed a post-graduate unit through Monash University in Advanced Hand Therapy Theory, Principles and Practice. In January 2015 Victoria joined HULC after relocating to Perth, where she is part of our medico-legal assessment team and runs final assessment clinics with our principle surgeon.

Victoria is an active member of the hand therapy community and regularly attends state and national Australian Hand Therapy Association (AHTA) meetings and conferences, as well as Hand Interest Group Meetings (run through the WA Occupational Therapy Association).

Accredited Hand Therapist (as awarded by the Australian Hand Therapy Association)

Accountant

Yan Li

Who We Are