Different Areas of Occupational Therapy

Table of Content

tGuidelines Your assignment is based on the different areas of occupational therapy – An occupational therapist can work in many areas of the health service. In your assignment it looks in debt at a number of these areas and the roles and responsibilities of the occupational therapist. Acknowledgements I would like to express my special appreciation and thanks to my lecturer Philomena Mccluskey you have been a tremendous mentor for me. Your advice on both my research assignments as well as on my career guidance has been invaluable.

I would also like to express my thanks to the staff at the Cavan Institute library that could not be more helpful when I was researching my assignment and providing some useful resources. Introduction Appropriate planning was undertaken in this assignment to give an insight into the diverse areas of occupational therapy. According to the NHS, occupational therapy is the assessment and treatment of physical and psychiatric conditions using specific purposeful activity to prevent disability and promote independent function in all aspects of life.

This essay could be plagiarized. Get your custom essay
“Dirty Pretty Things” Acts of Desperation: The State of Being Desperate
128 writers

ready to help you now

Get original paper

Without paying upfront

The aim of this study is to evaluate the appropriate skills and personal qualities needed to be an occupational therapist assistant. The author will look in-depth at the areas of employment an occupational therapist assistant can work in. e. g. both public and private. The collaboration of the different disciplines team members such as health care support workers and physiotherapist assistants will also be looked and how their roles differ from an occupational therapy assistant. Main Body Understanding and knowledge of the practice of Occupational Therapy Occupational therapy is the art and science of enabling engagement in everyday living (Townsend& Polatajko, 2007, p. 372). Occupational therapists are concerned with facilitating individuals to do everyday things that they see relevant to their lifestyle. The chief function of an occupational therapist is to improve patient care through continues determination and assurance that the patient will overcome their established condition, whether it is a mental health issue or a physical disability.

The primary intentions of an Occupational therapist are to provide intervention that will assist in the rehabilitation of the client and try to offer the patient a sense of self-discipline. Firstly the occupational therapist has to assess the patient’s performance in daily living and evaluate their physical and cognitive ability (multiple sclerosis society Ireland, 2013). The occupational therapist will also look at the residential confinement that the patient is living in and consider its potential for future functionality.

Furthermore, the Occupational therapist aims to empower people to reach their full potential, achieve their goals, and enjoy life to the full (British association of occupational therapists, 2013). A lot of patients being treated usually have a loss of confidence and may suffer from slight anxiety or depression. According to the work of Holmes and Rahe, they suggest that ‘an accumulation of significant life events in any one year increases your vulnerability to stress related problems’ (Holmes & Rahe 1967).

This issue can be resolved by introducing cognitive behavioural techniques and setting realistic goals for patients that are attainable within a certain period of time (short term and long term goals). Occupational therapists work in a variety of settings including hospitals, day care centres, nursing homes, schools, universities, community centres and rehabilitation centres. Many also work in private practice and provide occupational therapy in the client’s home or residential setting (AOTI 2013).

The knowledge and practice of an occupational therapist is vital when collaborating with other disciplinary team members such as physiotherapists, speech and language therapists, nurses and doctors when assessing patients. * An appreciation of the theories and principles of occupational therapy practice According to Jane Addams ‘’the sense of uselessness is the severest shock the human system can sustain and if persistently sustained results in atrophy of function’’ The above statement is closely associated with patients that have impaired mobility and a diminishing level of independent living.

The occupational therapist has to assess clients by inspecting motor function, sensory function, cognitive function and interpersonal skills. How do occupational therapists help people to become more independent through occupational practice? Initially the occupational therapist has to undertake assessment of previous and current levels of function, set client centred goals, introduce adaptive devices that may aid recovery, and provide recurrent treatment sessions. An occupational therapist implements various models of practice to comprehend the interactional observation between the patient and environment.

An occupational therapist adopts models such as the PEO model (P-person E-environment O-occupation), Moho (model of human occupation) and the Kawa (river) model. The PEO model was founded by Law et al (1996) in a response to an identified need of occupational therapy literature that describes the theory and clinical application of the interaction between the person, the environment and the occupation. The collaborations of the three components results in occupational performance (P-E-O) as presented in the Figure 1. 1 Figure 1. 1 sourced from; http://www. oerafrica. rg/ftpfolder/Occupation%20Focus%20Conceptual%20frameworks/lecture3. htm The three aspects of this theory are all very much interconnected with one another. Occupational therapy practice is shaped by transaction that occurs between person, occupation and environment. When an occupational therapist is doing an initial assessment of how a patient fits into this PEO theory. The closer the overlap/fit between the three components the more effective the theory is in assessing a client. The outcome of greater compatibility is of a more optimal occupational performance.

This theory may not suit every patient needs as occupational therapy may be hindered by a dysfunction continuum i. e. Problems such as a poor person- environment fit. Another theory that an occupational therapist may adapt when evaluating a client is the Kawa (river) model. The Kawa model was created in Japan and it is a cognitive approach to evaluating a client. The model asks clients to draw a river representing their lives; driftwood, waterfalls, rocks and other objects portray obstacles and various events throughout life. It is a model that can and has been translated to fit individuals of all backgrounds. Michael Iwama, 2013) In figure 1. 2 is an example of how this theory can be implemented into the practice of occupational therapy. It focuses on where the patient has struggled in their life by dividing the river into sections. Fig 1. 2 These occupational- focused theoretical construct have been developed specifically to explain the process and practice of occupational therapy. These theories and principles have assisted occupational therapists in evaluating client’s capabilities in areas such as activities of daily living such as; self-care, work/productivity and leisure. An application of the unique role of the Occupational therapist assistant in the health services. According to the NHS, An occupational therapist assistant provides assistances to registered occupational therapists in their day to day duties. Once the occupational therapist (OT) has assessed the client’s needs, the occupational therapist assistant helps that individual to achieve goals, such as going shopping or preparing a simple meal. They support and encourage clients and report back on their progress, liaising with the OT and possibly with nursing staff and social workers.

They also make sure the clients have all the special aids they need and that the equipment is in good working order. (NHS, 2013) They also provide support to the patient by; maintaining and promoting a positive attitude toward clients and their treatment programs, teach patients how to deal constructively with their emotions and demonstrate therapy techniques, such as manual and creative arts, and games that may assist in the patient’s rehabilitations program.

In order to become an occupational therapist assistant, one must share some of the following qualities; to have caring and encouraging attitude, tact and sensitivity, patience, good communication skills, initiative, the ability to work in a team, the ability to relate to people of all ages and backgrounds and have good practical skills, such as cookery, woodwork or pottery. In the UK an occupational therapist works primarily in the public sector such as hospitals, rehabilitation centres and care homes.

Also occupational therapists assistants can work in schools that specialise in intellectual disabilities. These schools can be both public and private. The variances between the public and private health sector is that a client may be assessed quicker in private sector in the occupational therapy field than a patient that was to be dependent on the public health service. * An understanding of how the role differs from other support grades in the health services. An occupational therapist assistant has a very distinctive role.

It is very different to other support grades such as health care assistant and physiotherapy assistants. An occupational therapy assistant works under the direction of occupational therapists to plan, implement and administer educational, vocational, and recreational programs that restore and enhance performance in individuals with functional impairments . Also an occupational therapist assistant has to report to supervisors, verbally or in writing, on patients’ progress, attitudes and behaviour.

Comparable to a health care support worker the occupational therapy assistant does not have to aid patients in dressing and grooming themselves. Also the dissimilarity between a physiotherapy assistant and occupational therapy assistant is that a physiotherapy assistant helps a patients in exercise therapy as an occupational therapy assistant evaluates the daily living skills and capacities of physically, developmentally or emotionally disabled clients. * An understanding and knowledge of the varying contexts of occupational therapy practice.

There are many different approaches taken in the practice of occupational therapy when gauging with clients. By gaining insight into how clinicians think and what they think about and how they identify and solve problems, we may be able to identify clinical reasoning patterns and processes that occupational therapy students and novice therapists need to experience in order to progress in their practice or to emerge as leaders in their field. (The American Occupational Therapy Association, 1991) Fundamentally an occupational therapist has to take an assured approach towards the service user.

The importance of self-concept, growth of individual and development of a healthy self-concept are the key aims of occupational therapy practice. The following are a frame of reference of the varying contexts of occupational therapy that may be taken when assessing a client; a holistic approach, humanistic approach and client centred tactic has to be adopted. * Holistic approach – is based on the body, mind and spirit of the individual * Humanistic approach – it is essentially a personal approach to clients’ needs by emphasising the positive nature of the individual. Client centred- setting goals, intervention, and treatment plans i. e. patient leads treatment. (Philomena Mccluskey, 2012) Essentially the occupational therapist facilitates the client by carrying out such approaches and creating a distinctive relationship – crucial to developing self-esteem. All of these approaches are brought together to enable the occupational therapist to create a treatment plan around the patients established condition. Conclusion To conclude, the author is going to recap and justify the chief findings of this assignment.

The aim and objective of occupational therapy performance is to provide intervention that will assist in rehabilitation of a patient and also set achievable goals for patients to accomplish in their care plan. Occupational therapy is the art and science of enabling engagement in everyday living (Townsend& Polatajko, 2007, p. 372) this has been specified in this research document. Also how intervention can improve patient care by adopting certain models of practice that will give an insight into the contextual background of the patient.

The author has also discussed the unique role and responsibilities of an occupational therapy assistant and how it differs from other support grades in the NHS . It is vital for a patient to receive attention from an occupational therapy assistant as they provide guidance and conciliation that they will gain a better sense of independent living. Throughout this assignment the essayist has exemplified the diverse areas of occupational therapy and how the different methods of assessing clients are used. The role of an occupational therapist is very much a person centred approach (Araham maslow – hierarchy of needs is adopted).

Occupational therapy is a very mentally challenging career. The writer has depicted this through elucidating the relevant information about the vocational work area an occupational therapist is embroiled in and the significant improvements in intervention that will assist in the rehabilitation of students in years to come. Recommendations From examining this assignment I found it quite difficult to obtain primary sources of material that was associated to occupational therapy in the Cavan Institute library or the Cavan central library.

I would recommend that the healthcare department source some books associated with occupational therapy for both staff and student use in the library in the coming months. Also I found the assessment criteria quite hard to follow with such different issues to be addressed. If I was compiling this assignment I would allocate fewer marks towards the role of the occupational therapy assistant as I found it quite difficult to gather information on an occupational therapy assistant in the HSE in Ireland. Bibliography

Cite this page

Different Areas of Occupational Therapy. (2016, Oct 29). Retrieved from


Remember! This essay was written by a student

You can get a custom paper by one of our expert writers

Order custom paper Without paying upfront