How Did You Promote OT Today?

by Cheryl Hall on July 30th, 2021

I found notes from a lecture I attended years ago that listed dozens of ways occupational therapists could promote and educate people about OT. While it saddened me a little that OTs continue to struggle with an identity crisis, I also believe occupational therapy is so valuable that it is worth the effort.

So, what can you do today to promote and educate others about our profession?

  • Online
  • ● Repost stories about occupational therapy.
  • ● Follow your favorite OTs on social media.
  • ● Post OT memes on your social media feeds.
  • ● Use social media resources developed for OT Month (April) and World OT Day (October).
  • ● Share your own blog or online posts about OT.
  • ● If a story or post doesn’t include OT, make a comment.

  • Professional Associations
  • ● Join AOTA and get involved in their efforts to promote OT.
  • ● Attend conferences and other events promoting OT.
  • ● Contribute to professional publications.
  • ● Submit proposals for poster sessions or workshops at state and national conferences.

  • Volunteer in the community
  • ● Speak at a senior center, business association or local service organization.
  • ● Participate in career day at a local school.
  • ● Help conduct home safety assessments.
  • ● Conduct assessments at a homeless shelter or domestic violence safe house.
  • ● Work with kids at your local Boys and Girls Club.
  • ● Work on IADLs at a group home for developmentally disabled.

  • Increase the visibility of OT
  • ● Make sure your office or cubicle says Occupational Therapy.
  • ● Frame and hang your diploma.
  • ● Wear an “Ask me about OT” button at work.

  • Build relationships with other healthcare professionals
  • ● Write an article for your hospital or agency newsletter.
  • ● Introduce new OTs to everyone on staff.
  • ● Share your knowledge and the unique skills you can offer as an OT at interdisciplinary team meetings.
  • ● Coordinate an in-service training.
  • ● Participate on agency wide committees (UR, QA, safety, ethics).
  • ● Volunteer for agency-sponsored community events.
  • ● Initiate brainstorming sessions with other professionals.

  • Build relationships with the patient and families
  • ● Prepare and practice your explanation of OT and its unique benefits for patients. For inspiration, check out my blog – What is OT? In 60 Seconds or Less!
  • ● Always leave patients and caregivers easy-to-read, illustrated patient education handouts that reinforce your therapy session. Check out some free sample handouts from the Occupational Therapy Toolkit.
  • ● Invite family members to participate in the treatment plan.

This topic is on AOTA’s radar this summer too with a free (for members) Knowledge Webinar which includes Branding OT particularly around innovative and non-traditional roles. I hope this list inspires you to find a new way to promote the value and unique contribution of OT – it will be worth the effort.

  • About Me

    Cheryl Hall
    Occupational Therapist
    Maryland, United States

    Welcome to a site devoted to sharing experience, knowledge and resources to make your job of being a great therapist a lot easier.

    I have been an occupational therapist for more than 30 years. I graduated from San Jose State University with degrees in Occupational Therapy, Gerontology, and Early Child Development. My passion is working with adults and children in home health but I have also worked in rehab, sub-acute rehab, hand therapy, transitional living for TBI, and hospital-based outpatient settings.

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