How do Health professionals' Perceptions of the Roles of Occupational Therapists Affect Occupational Therapy Practice in Interprofessional Home Health Teams?
Cheung, Sze Kei Irene
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Evidence shows that occupational therapists who work within interprofessional health teams sometimes have challenges delivering care to clients because other health professionals on the team have differing perceptions of their role. However, none of this research has been conducted in home health in Canada. Qualitative interviews with three non-occupational therapists and three occupational therapists were conducted to understand how role perceptions of occupational therapists affect occupational therapy practice in home health. The findings showed that occupational therapists were perceived to be experts in assessments and excellent collaborators. Also, they were perceived to be good at rehabilitation; however, their interventions were often limited to recommending equipment. Non-occupational therapists had difficulties understanding the roles of occupational therapists in home health, which could create practice challenges for occupational therapists. Educating team members about the role of occupational therapists could facilitate occupational therapists' ability to use their full range of skills in home health.