Jane Case-Smith, Stephen J. Page, Amy Darragh, Melinda Rybski, Dennis Cleary; The Professional Occupational Therapy Doctoral Degree: Why Do It?. Am J Occup Ther 2014;68(2):e55–e60. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2014.008805
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© 2019 American Occupational Therapy Association
This article presents a rationale for the development of professional occupational therapy doctorate (OTD) programs. As more universities transition to the entry-level OTD degree, opportunities are becoming available to advance the profession and increase benefits to clients. We analyzed the current health care environment and developed the following proposed outcomes for doctoral-trained practitioners: (1) Demonstrate advanced clinical skills; (2) attain proficiency in outcomes measurement and analysis and synthesis of outcomes data; (3) routinely use standardized evidence-based practice clinical guidelines that translate research into practice; (4) develop, implement, and lead health promotion services; and (5) excel as partners in interprofessional teams.
Attains a breadth and depth of clinical experiences to appropriately prepare for practice
Values and is skilled in data collection and outcomes measurement
Routinely uses standardized EBP clinical guidelines and translates research into practice
Develops, implements, and leads health promotion services
Excels as a partner in interprofessional teams
Providing community services and home-based care
Designing environmental accommodations, including workplace modifications, that enable full participation of people with disabilities
Developing and administering health promotion services for people with chronic and other health conditions that limit participation
Providing health promotion services through primary care offices and practices.
Advanced skills in clinical care of people with a variety of diagnoses using comprehensive intervention, documentation, evaluation, and assessment methods
Proficiency in outcomes measurement, program evaluation, and analysis and synthesis of outcomes data
Competence and confidence to consistently use EBP, including appropriately adapting protocols for individual clients and measuring the outcomes of such practices
Leadership skills in developing community-based programs and services that provide health promotion services, particularly those that target people with chronic health conditions, families of children with special needs, and people at risk for occupational loss or limitations
Communication and collaboration skills to move fluidly within health care teams serving in leadership and care management positions, advocating for clients, and supporting efficiencies that improve client outcomes.
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