In a previous blog, we covered the topic of occupational therapy. We explained what it is and how it differs from physical therapy.

Occupational therapy helps people who are struggling with a certain condition regain their level of functionality so that the patient can lead a normal life.

At St. Barnabas, we offer occupational therapy and if you’ve scheduled an appointment to meet with one of our skilled therapists, we want to fill you in on what you can expect from your evaluation.

Before your treatment can begin, an evaluation is needed to determine the approach that the therapist will take with his or her patient.

The evaluation process isn’t set in stone as it can range in length from anywhere between 20 minutes to several hours.

As is during most visits with a medical professional, some basic information will be collected to begin the assessment. In some cases, the therapist will have your medical records to review and work with you to fill in any missing pieces. Here’s a quick run-down of some of the information that your therapist will request during this stage of the evaluation:

  • Age
  • Diagnosis
  • Referring physician
  • Reason for referral
  • Past medical history

Be prepared to speak about your daily activities and detail the reason that prompted your visit.

Once the interview portion of the evaluation is completed, it’s on to the physical assessment when the therapist will begin to screen you for the following:

  • Coordination
  • Manual muscles test
  • Mental status
  • Range of motion (joints)
  • Sensation
  • Skin health
  • Tone

There’s a battery of tests that your therapist can run but the above are just a few examples. The assessment depends on the patient.

Finally, after both the interview and the physical assessment, the therapist will review his or her findings and decide if you would benefit from occupational therapy.

If you’re a good candidate, your therapist will set goals for you to obtain and an action plan that will help you reach and exceed your set goals.

At St. Barnabas Medical Center, our occupational therapists offer a holistic and well-thought out plan to all of our patients so that you get the specific, individualized plan that you need to succeed.

If you’d like to schedule a visit, contact us today.


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