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What is occupational therapy? 

The primary goal of occupational therapy is to enable people to participate fully in everyday activities and realise greater independence and life satisfaction. Thomastown occupational therapists achieve this by considering a client’s specific limitations and modifying elements of the home, school or leisure environment to support participation. Disease, injury, development and ageing. OTs often use education and rehabilitation to develop a person’s performance in everyday activities. 

How do I know if I, or those in my care, need occupational therapy?

If daily activities such as self-care, leisure, work or driving are limited by disability, a chronic health condition, injury or ageing, occupational therapy can help you to gain independence and enjoy greater quality of life. For children with developmental delays, Thomastown occupational therapy can enable or improve participation and performance in education, leisure and social life – in turn increasing a child’s confidence, self-esteem and wellbeing. 

 

How can an occupational therapist help? 

Occupational therapists have varied skills to assist different client groups to achieve their functional and occupational goals. Elements of an OT program may include: 

  • Increasing independence with daily living activities, eg. dressing, feeding, hygiene
  • Prescribing equipment to aid independence (e.g. wheelchairs and chair modifications)
  • Recommending and facilitating home and vehicle modifications (e.g. bathroom rails, hoists and hand-controlled braking)
  • Initiating return to work programs
  • Teaching community living skills
  • Teaching thinking, visual and movement skills
  • Enhancing play skills

What is a home assessment? 

Ideally, an occupational therapist conducts initial assessments in clients’ home environments to best assess their needs. During a home assessment visit, an OT identifies strengths and weaknesses of the environment in the context of clients’ physical and mental capabilities. In consultation with a participant and members of their care team, they then formulate their recommendations into a comprehensive home modification report. This report specifies changes that would enable clients to successfully execute specific tasks of daily living and may include the prescription of assistive technology and aids. 

 

Is occupational therapy subsidised?

Private health insurance

Most private health insurers cover occupational therapy. Please contact your provider for more information.

NDIS

We are able to see all NDIS participants including self-managed, plan-managed and agency-managed clients. For information regarding our NDIS OT provisions, please contact our community care team. 

Medicare 

A number of Medicare schemes enable adults and children to access funding support for occupational therapy services. These include provisions for clients with a Chronic Disease Management plan (CDM), who may receive up to five sessions per calendar year. Please contact us to discuss other Medicare funding programs that may apply to your personal circumstances. 

What is children’s occupational therapy?

Common reasons for children participating in occupational therapy include sensory processing difficulties, gross and fine motor difficulties, handwriting difficulties, developmental delay, attention difficulties, difficulties at school or pre-school and diagnoses such as autism spectrum disorder, ADHD and global developmental delay. A Thomastown children’s occupational therapist can help your child to realise greater success in school, leisure and social life – increasing their self-esteem and confidence, quality of life and wellbeing.

 

What qualifications should I look for in an OT? 

Occupational therapy is a highly specialised allied health discipline demanding rigorous tertiary education and field experience. In Australia, practising occupational therapists must have undertaken university qualifications accredited by the Occupational Therapy Board of Australia. Courses that equip Australian occupational therapists to practise include Bachelor of Health Science (Occupational Therapy), Bachelor of Occupational Therapy and Master of Occupational Therapy – most of which require four years’ full time study.