people consulting

Profession: Occupational Therapist

Qualification and registration requirements

Occupational Therapists are university qualified health professionals who complete an undergraduate or graduate entry course in occupational therapy.

An Occupational Therapist will need to be registered with AHPRA to practice from July 2012.

What is an Occupational Therapist?

Occupational Therapy is a profession concerned with promoting health and well-being through occupation.

The primary goal of occupational therapy is to enable people to participate fully in the activities of their everyday life.  It does this by using specific activities to enable people to do things that will enhance their ability to participate or by modifying the physical environment to better support participation.

Occupational therapists help their clients cope with demands, adapt to tasks, and overcome challenges in their everyday lives.  They do this by using a person's usual daily activities and tasks (their 'occupations') in a therapeutic way.

What does an Occupational Therapist do?

As an example, Occupational Therapists develop therapeutic activities for children that will assist them to achieve their developmental milestones such as fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination.  In acute hospital settings, Occupational Therapists provide specialist interventions to assist with functional recovery and prescribe adaptive equipment to ensure safety upon discharge from hospitals.  Occupational therapists help clients regain or enhance their daily lives after specific events such as hip replacement or stroke by assessing and modifying the clients' home and community environments to improve their safety and independence.

Related links

For information on how to gain recognition of Allied Health qualifications obtained overseas, please contact the relevant professional association as per web links above.