Occupational Therapists: Roles, Duties, Responsibilities and Qualifications

The purpose of this paper is to explain various aspects of occupational therapy as an occupation. The paper suggests that occupational therapists treat injured or disabled patents by offering guidelines on regular therapeutic activities. The environment of occupational therapists includes nursing homes, therapy hospitals, and offices or homes of patients. An occupational therapist is required to have a Master’s degree, and he or she earns about $75,400 per year.

Who is an Occupational Therapist and what does he or she do?

Occupational therapy is an occupation which involves treatment of disabled, injured or ill patients through regular therapeutic activities (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014). Occupational therapists are important in healthcare because they help patients to recover, develop and improve their abilities in daily activities. Therefore, they help people to be able to carry out their daily activities in a normal way after an injury, illness or disabilities. Lloyd and Bassett (2012) suggest that occupational therapists assess and examine patients, and develop a recovery plan to help them to recover and regain their abilities to perform normal duties.

In terms of work environment, occupational therapists work in hospitals, nursing homes, schools, offices of physicians, or homes (American Occupational Therapy Association, 2008). Most occupational therapists work in occupational therapy or hospital offices. Occupational therapists also spend most of their time standing, walking or crouching on their feet as they help their patients (Söderback, 2009). Occupational therapy is carried out in a safe, secure and secluded environment to avoid disruptions and further injuries.

For a person to become an occupational therapist, he or she should possess a master’s degree in occupational therapy (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014). In United States, occupational therapists are also required to be duly registered and licensed to carry out occupational therapy. Registered and licensed occupational therapists with master’s degree and employed in United States earned a median annual wage of $75,400 in 2012. Employment of occupational therapists is satisfactory because it is expected to grow by 29% between 2012 and 2022 (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014). Therefore, it will continue to play an essential role in people’s treatment.

References List

American Occupational Therapy Association. (2008). Occupational therapy practice: Domain & process. Bethesda, MD: American Occupational Therapy Association.

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor (2014). Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, accessed Sept 3, 2015 from http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/occupational-therapists.htm

Lloyd, C. & Bassett, H. (2012). The role of occupational therapy in working with the homeless population: An assertive outreach approach. New Zealand Journal of Occupational Therapy, 59(1), 18–23.

Söderback, I. (2009). International handbook of occupational therapy interventions. Dordrecht: Springer.

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