What is Occupational Therapy?
Occupational therapy is a musculoskeletal discipline that is less understood than physical therapy and chiropractic. However, the impact it can have on someone’s health and physical function can’t be overstated.
Occupational therapists work in a variety of healthcare settings, including hospitals, schools, rehabilitation facilities, and nursing homes. Depending on the environment, occupational therapists focus on different goals, use various tools, and perform different treatments; all focused on helping someone do what they need and want to do in their everyday lives.
To learn more about this service, we sat down with one of our experts who shared how occupational therapy at Premise Health helps workforces meet their fullest potential while reducing costs for their employer.
What is the role of occupational therapists at Premise Health?
Our occupational therapists leverage their specialized knowledge of upper extremity anatomy, biomechanics, and function to treat pain or injury affecting the shoulder, elbow, wrist, or hand. This knowledge translates across multiple settings within the Premise Health ecosystem.
You’ll find them working in our onsite and nearsite medical home models treating conditions like tennis elbow and tendonitis of the wrist or hand. They’re also contributors to the occupational health space providing instruction for job-specific ergonomic modifications, evaluating and treating work-related injuries, or even working in an early intervention program.
In all of these settings, our occupational therapists work in close collaboration with other providers like nurse practitioners, physical therapists, and athletic trainers as a part of Premise Health’s approach to prevention and evidence-based management of musculoskeletal conditions.
What tools do occupational therapists use at Premise?
In addition to the specialized hands-on care provided by the occupational therapist, tools such as strengthening and stretching equipment, and modalities like electrical stimulation and ultrasound may be used to improve a member’s function. In addition to this, our occupational therapists often form splints and braces to prevent injury and manage conditions as they heal.
Care doesn’t stop there, though, our provider teams ensure members receive the right education they need to continue making progress toward recovery. Our occupational therapists educate members on their condition and partner with them to get back to work and life. To support this path of recovery, our providers develop customized exercise and pain management programs that are delivered to members virtually, allowing them to watch videos and view photos of the activities that are prescribed by their therapist.
What industries commonly use occupational therapy?
While every organization greatly benefits from having occupational therapy integrated into their healthcare offering, those whose work requires frequent, repetitive movement of the upper extremities profit significantly from having an occupational therapist available to their members. These industries include, but aren’t limited to:
- Food and beverage processing
How does occupational therapy help organizations?
Occupational therapy offers specialty care that is tailored to each population’s unique needs while providing the expertise that helps people get better, faster. Occupational therapists assist members in adapting daily tasks, reducing musculoskeletal symptoms such as pain or limited mobility, and making everyday activities easy. Our occupational therapists lead workforces to greater success and productivity by giving them the support they need to conquer their limitations and prevent injuries.