Occupational therapy in adolescent psychiatry: Master’s thesis in occupational therapy
1) Hospital district of Helsinki, HUCH, Finland
Aim: There is lack of knowledge of occupational therapy and special competencies of occupational therapists in adolescent psychiatry in Finland despite the fact that occupational therapist have worked in adolescent psychiatry already for 25 years.
Methods: The information was collected in focus group-interviews of 13 occupational therapist working in adolescent psychiatry. Data was analysed and compared with recent studies done outside Finland.
Results: Age-specific features of the client and adolescence itself define then content of occupational therapy. Individual approach to work and organisational culture have a major influence on practice in adolescent psychiatric working environment. Substance knowledge and unique contribution in occupational therapy include e.g. assessment of occupational performance, therapeutic use of purposeful activities and group-counselling.
Conclusion: Occupational therapists should strengthen the theoretical perspective in adolescent psychiatry. Implementation studies of standardised measures for occuptional performance of juveniles are needed to support the occupational therapists in adolescent psychiatry in their clinical work.
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