Also called: Occupational Therapist (OT), Pediatric Occupational Therapist, Registered Occupational Therapist, Staff Therapist
Produced by CareerOneStop
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Being self-sufficient in everyday life contributes to a person’s confidence and self-esteem. Occupational therapists – also called OTs – help people develop…recover… and improve their self-sufficiency and the ability to enjoy work and daily activities…more fully. Patients typically seek out the help of OTs due to disability, illness, injury, or mental health issues. They help patients with daily life activities such as feeding themselves, getting ready for work without assistance, using public transportation, and participating in school. OTs work with their patients to identify goals for treatment, then create treatment plans to reach them. Occupational therapists evaluate patients’ homes and workplaces to find ways to better prepare the environment for their needs; for example, labeling cabinets or removing fall hazards. They often educate a patient’s family and employer about how to accommodate the person’s needs, and document patients’ progress throughout the treatment. These therapists work at hospitals, clinics, schools, and nursing homes. They spend a lot of time on their feet, and may lift or move patients. Many travel to meet patients in different settings, and may work evenings and weekends. Being supportive and enthusiastic are important personal qualities for OTs. A master’s degree and a license are required to enter the field; though some positions require a doctoral-level degree. Occupational therapy is often a demanding career, but it’s one that offers a rich reward— helping people lead more active and independent lives.
What they do:Assess, plan, organize, and participate in rehabilitative programs that help build or restore vocational, homemaking, and daily living skills, as well as general independence, to persons with disabilities or developmental delays.
On the job, you would:
- Complete and maintain necessary records.
- Test and evaluate patients' physical and mental abilities and analyze medical data to determine realistic rehabilitation goals for patients.
- Train caregivers in providing for the needs of a patient during and after therapy.
- therapy and counseling
- medicine and dentistry
Math and Science
- sociology and anthropology
Education and Training
- teaching and course design
Arts and Humanities
- English language
- keeping track of how well people and/or groups are doing in order to make improvements
- listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
- looking for ways to help people
- understanding people's reactions
People and Technology Systems
- thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one
- figuring out how a system should work and how changes in the future will affect it
- communicate by speaking
- listen and understand what people say
Ideas and Logic
- notice when problems happen
- make general rules or come up with answers from lots of detailed information
- pay attention to something without being distracted
People interested in this work like activities that include helping people, teaching, and talking.
They do well at jobs that need:
- Concern for Others
- Self Control
You might use software like this on the job:
Computer based training software
- Language arts educational software
- Text to speech software
- Casamba Smart
- Lexrotech LxPediatric
Word processing software
- Athletic Trainers
- Career/Technical Education Teachers, Secondary School
- Low Vision Therapists, Orientation & Mobility Specialists, & Vision Rehabilitation Therapists
- Nurse Midwives
- Nurse Practitioners
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