Occupational therapy what you need to know
Occupation Occupations are anything and everything you do to occupy your time. Occupations include: • Things you have to do (eat, bathe, get around your home). • Things you need to do (finances, groceries). • Things you want to do (bake, woodwork, hobbies)
Occupational Therapy Occupational therapy is a profession that addresses the reasons why someone can not do the things (occupations) that they have to, need to or want to do. The reasons why someone can’t do an occupation can be because of their surroundings (physical or social environment), because of the demands of the activity (occupation) or because of barriers from the person’s abilities (physical, emotional, mental).
Occupational Therapists Occupational therapists assess the environment, the occupation and the person’s ability. Occupational therapists provide solutions, ideas and suggestions that allow the person to do what they have to, need to and want to do.
Occupational Therapists work in: Homes Hospitals Schools Work Places The Community
Occupational Therapists work with: People who are born with a disability People who become injured People who become sick People with mental and physical health conditions Older adults, children and everyone in between
Occupational Therapy can: • Improve health and well-being • Shorten hospital stays • Return injured or sick employees to work sooner • Improve independence • Support chronic disease self-management
Accessing Occupational Therapy Occupational therapists work in different service models: • The public health system (hospitals, community care, rehabilitation centres) • Workplace insurance programs • Federal health programs (Veterans Affairs, Corrections) • Private practice Some insurance companies cover occupational therapy, though it may not be listed on the benefit plan.
Ask for it! If you think that occupational therapy can help you or someone you know, ask for it! • Ask your primary health care provider or a team member. • Ask your insurance provider (insurance companies report that the chance of them covering occupational therapy will increase with increased requests from their clients). • Ask your employer to include it in extended health benefit packages.
Finding an Occupational Therapist You don’t need a referral to receive occupational therapy. Places to look to find an occupational therapist: • Public health services often have lists of occupational therapists working privately in your community • www.caot.ca OT Finder (on the home page) • Internet searches, yellow pages, word of mouth