Occupational therapy support workers (also known as occupational therapy assistants/rehabilitation assistants/technical instructors) assist registered occupational therapists in their day-to-day duties
They support and encourage clients and report back on their progress, liaising with the occupational therapist and possibly with nursing staff and social services. They also make sure the clients have all the special aids they need and that the equipment is in good working order.
OT support staff benefit from learning on the job and can choose to develop their skills further through formal training programmes.
They might work towards QCF level 2 or 3 qualifications in Healthcare Support Services or Clinical Healthcare Support.
Generally, there are no specific qualifications required to become an OT support worker, although there are programmes available which provide an entry qualification into this kind of work, and some employers may have specific requirements regarding experience and prior learning, depending on the role. OT support workers also benefit from learning on the job and can choose to continue to develop their skills, knowledge and competencies through a wide range of formal training opportunities available.
Staff working in these roles need:
- A caring and encouraging attitude
- Tact and sensitivity
- Good communication skills
- The ability to work in a team
- The ability to relate to people of all ages and backgrounds and
- Practical skills
The interest in these posts is very strong, so applying can be competitive. Be sure to check with the employer about what skills and experience might give you a better chance of employment.