Occupational therapy is a health care profession that helps people across the lifespan participate in the activities they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities (American Occupational Therapy Association, 2016). Occupational therapists work with people who have physical, cognitive, emotional, and social challenges to help them improve their daily lives.
There are many strengths to occupational therapy. Occupational therapists are experts in helping people regain skills they may have lost due to an illness or injury. They can also help people learn new skills so they can participate more fully in life. Occupational therapists work with people of all ages, so they have a lot of experience working with different populations. They also understand the importance of meaningful activities and how they can impact overall health and wellbeing.
There are also some weaknesses to occupational therapy. Occupational therapists can be expensive, so not everyone can afford to see one. They may also not be available in all areas. Occupational therapy can also be time consuming, so people may need to make a lot of changes to their schedule in order to accommodate it.
Overall, occupational therapy is a great profession with many strengths. It can help people regain skills they lost, learn new skills, and participate more fully in life. There are some weaknesses, but these are outnumbered by the strengths.
Strengths are internal factors that may promote a successful goal or outcome to occur successfully, these are things that should be done (Minnesota Dept. of Health 2016). -Use of evidence in practice allows for the application of current best-practice. -Client-centered care enables the therapist to treat the whole person. – Occupational therapists are trained in using a variety of assessment tools. – They have clinical reasoning skills to determine what intervention will be most effective for each individual client.
Some strengths and weaknesses are common to all health care professions, not just occupational therapy. These include: – The increasing cost of healthcare and potential decrease in insurance reimbursements (American Occupational Therapy Association, 2016). – The aging population and the increasing prevalence of chronic conditions, which require more long-term care (American Occupational Therapy Association, 2016). -The complexities of healthcare delivery and the need for interprofessional collaboration (American Occupational Therapy Association, 2016).
Information from a variety of and diverse sources may be critically evaluated and assessed in order to provide evidence for the effectiveness of certain occupational therapy treatments (CAOT 2016). This allows occupational therapists to offer services to customers and other professionals based on current evidence, improving patient care (CAOT 2016). Treatment choices can then be made by integrating the evaluation with client demands and judgments.
Occupational therapists also use their knowledge to prevent and manage health conditions (AOTA 2016). Prevention is a key focus in Occupational Therapy as many health conditions are manageable when caught early. Occupational therapists work with people of all ages and abilities, making them well-rounded practitioners that can provide care for a wide range of patients.
There are some weaknesses to Occupational Therapy, however. One weakness is that research on the effectiveness of Occupational Therapy treatments is often inconclusive (CAOT 2016). This means that treatments may not be backed by evidence, and thus may not be as effective as they could be. Additionally, Occupational Therapists may not have the same training in all areas, making it difficult to treat certain conditions (AOTA 2016).
Occupational Therapists also sometimes have difficulty communicating their findings to other professionals, as Occupational Therapy is often misunderstood (AOTA 2016). However, these weaknesses are often offset by the strengths of Occupational Therapy, making it a valuable profession.
However, while I believe that critically evaluating research is time-consuming and occupational therapists frequently lack understanding and skills in information gathering (Bennett & Bennett, 2000), I think this may be an area in the profession that can be taught to OTs by incorporating it into university courses or allowing current occupational therapists to take short courses or learn from others, such as recent graduates. Staff may use critical appraisal checklists to help them decide whether the research they’ve discovered is valid.
Occupational therapists also need to be aware of their own personal biases when appraising research, as well as the potential for researcher bias (Gough, Swain, & Waring, 2013). Occupational therapists must also remember to consider the clinical context when appraising research (Hughes et al., 2009).
OTs are often strengths in patient-centered care and working with people from a holistic perspective (Foley et al., 2006; Powell et al., 2007). Foley et al. found that OTs’ holistic perspective was beneficial for working with clients with mental health issues. OTs often have a good understanding of the occupations of their clients and can use this information to develop intervention goals and objectives (Powell et al.). Occupational therapists also use a client-centered approach in their practice, which is beneficial for working with clients who have experienced trauma (Gough et al.).
However, there are some areas where OTs could improve. Occupational therapists can be more aware of the impact of social determinants of health on their client’s health and wellbeing (Hughes et al., 2009). Additionally, OTs need to develop their skills in evidence-based practice so that they can critically appraise research and apply this to clinical practice (Gough et al., 2013). Occupational therapists also need to be aware of the power dynamics within relationships and how these can influence their interactions with clients (Foley et al., 2006).
It is essential to put in the time and effort, as this will pay off in terms of increased productivity. Teamwork between coworkers, as well as good time management/rostering, will assist with this. I think that using evidence to make practice decisions may improve the treatment’s effectiveness for patients. A SWOT analysis within health care can help organizations, programs, and people identify both internal and external factors that affect a practice positively or negatively.
Occupational Therapy (OT) is a dynamic profession that has many strengths. These strengths can be used to build upon and improve weaknesses within the profession, as well as to capitalise on opportunities and overcome threats. This essay will explore some of the key strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of OT, in order to provide a balanced view of the profession.
Some of the key strengths of OT include:
– Occupational therapists are highly skilled and qualified professionals, who undergo extensive training in order to be able to practise.
– Occupational therapists work with clients to promote their health and wellbeing through meaningful occupation.
– Occupational therapists use a holistic approach to client care, taking into account the physical, psychological social and spiritual needs of the client.
– Occupational therapists work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, community health centres, schools and private practice.
– Occupational therapy is recognised as a profession by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and is included in the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF).