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Research Article  |   May 1995
Recruitment and Retention Strategies Used by Occupational Therapy Directors in Acute Care, Rehabilitation, and Long-Term-Care Settings
Author Affiliations
  • Patrick Smith, MS, OTR/L, is Supervisor, Occupational Therapy, Fairfield Medical Center, 401 N. Ewing Street, Lancaster, Ohio 43130. At the time this research was completed, he was employed at the J. Leonard Camera Center, Columbus, Ohio
  • M. Rosita Schiller, PhD, is Professor, School of Allied Medical Professions, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio
  • H. Kay Grant, PhD, FAOTA, is Director, Occupational Therapy Division, School of Allied Medical Professions, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio
  • Larry Sachs, PhD, is Associate Director, School of Allied Medical Professions, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio
Article Information
Long-Term Care/Skilled Nursing Facilities / Rehabilitation, Participation, and Disability / Research
Research Article   |   May 1995
Recruitment and Retention Strategies Used by Occupational Therapy Directors in Acute Care, Rehabilitation, and Long-Term-Care Settings
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May 1995, Vol. 49, 412-419. doi:10.5014/ajot.49.5.412
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May 1995, Vol. 49, 412-419. doi:10.5014/ajot.49.5.412
Abstract

Objectives. Occupational therapy directors need to recruit and retain therapists to ensure both the delivery of high-quality services and the viability of their departments. At present, research on the recruitment and retention of occupational therapists is limited; recruitment and retention strategies can be cited, but their utility and effectiveness have not been determined.

Method. A survey was designed to identify the recruitment and retention strategies used in various practice settings and the perceived level of effectiveness of those strategies that were used. The surveys were mailed to 500 occupational therapy directors. Once the sample size was adjusted to exclude non-eligible subjects, the eligible sample size was 471. Of these, 320 (68%) were usable.

Results. Ten of the 23 recruitment strategies listed on the survey were used by more than 70% of the respondents. The top three recruitment strategies were staff member referrals, professional development opportunities, and newspaper advertisements. Seventeen of the 23 retention strategies listed on the survey were used by more than 70% of the respondents. The top three retention strategies were interpersonal staff member relationships, employee appraisals, and continuing education.

Conclusion. Findings suggest that occupational therapy departments’ recruitment and retention plans could be improved by expanding the number of strategies used and by incorporating techniques that appeal to a broader range of therapists.