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Become A Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant

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Working As A Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant

  • Assisting and Caring for Others
  • Getting Information
  • Documenting/Recording Information
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Performing General Physical Activities
  • Deal with People

  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • Unpleasant/Hazardous Environment

  • Make Decisions

  • $57,870

    Average Salary

What Does A Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant Do At Mercy Medical Center Clinton

* Assists OTR/L with formulating intervention plan based on identified participant problem areas as well as strengths in conjunction with the participant, family, and IDT.
* Informs the OTR/L of need for re-evaluation and provides accurate information regarding this process.
* Establishes suitable and achievable goals with time frames.
* Administers treatment according to established treatment plan and procedures (range of motion, strengthening, neuromuscular facilitation, splinting, edema control, functional activities, coordination, cognitive retraining, perceptual motor training, ADLs).
* Uses creativity and variety to achieve goals.
* Explains occupational therapy services and intervention plan to participants, caregivers and members of the interdisciplinary team.
* Coordinates and provides participant treatment and provide participant and family education in regard to occupational therapy program

What Does A Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant Do At Whittier Rehabilitation & Skilled Nursing Center

* Under the supervision of and as instructed by the licensed therapist, conducts Leisure Surveys; implements individual interventions, in keeping with established goals.
* Conducts group activities as outlined by a licensed therapist.
* Formulates short term goals and interventions based on the results of Leisure Surveys, and consistent with established long term goals, as instructed by licensed therapist.
* Carries out interdisciplinary treatment plan goals, as outlined by Interdisciplinary Treatment Team.
* Assesses learning and teaching needs of the patient.
* Counsels individuals who have mental illness and/or substance abuse, helping them identify behaviors, problems, and solutions to their problems.
* Promotes identification and utilization of healthy living skills.
* Maintains appropriate patient care documentation as instructed by a licensed therapist.
* Reports and documents any changes observed in condition, mood, affect and/or behavior of patient and unusual incidences.
* Prerequisites:
* Associates Degree in occupational therapy from an AOTA‐accredited program.
* Current certification: National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy.
* Current licensure from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Board of Allied Health Professions.
* Minimum of 1‐2 years of experience in an in‐patient crisis setting or other relevant psychiatric setting; knowledge of psychiatric disorders.
* Knowledge, experience and competency in dealing with adult /geriatric populations.
* Certification in BLS of Adult, Child and Infant.
* Knowledge of growth and development across the life span.
* Knowledge, experience and competency in dealing with adult rehabilitation and geriatric age groups.
* Experience in leading groups and activities.
* Location:
* Haverhill, MA
* The Whittier Pavilion
* Category

What Does A Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant Do At Aegis Therapies

* Provides treatment to patients as directed by the Occupational Therapist
* Instructs families and staff in maintenance programs as directed by the Occupational Therapist
* Communicates with supervisor and other interdisciplinary team members regarding patient progress, problems, and plans
* Participates in patient-care conferences and weekly rehabilitation meetings
* Participates in treatment location in-service training programs
* Remains knowledgeable of state practice acts and ensures the level of supervision they receive meets standards.
* Does not provide treatment outside of practice act limits
* Assists with cleaning and maintenance of treatment area and department
* Documents patient care services by charting in patient and department records according to accepted regulatory, corporate and professional guidelines.
* Records daily treatment charges per corporate procedures.
* Documentation will be completed using a company furnished hand held electronic device (i.e. Ipad).
* Protects patients and employees by adhering to treatment location infection control policies and protocols and keeping information confidential per company and federal requirements.
* Maintains safe and clean working environment by complying with treatment location and department procedures, rules and regulations.
* Ensures proper operation of equipment by complying with company procedures and following manufacturer’s instructions
* Provides services in multiple settings (including skilled nursing, assisted living, patient homes, and outpatient) as determined by supervisor and patient/resident need including community based services such as home health and wellness activities as required

What Does A Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant Do At Absolut Care

* Evaluate and treat patients
* Participate in family care plan meetings
* Set up treatment plans and be able to adjust them when necessary
* Demonstrate ability to work with geriatric residents

What Does A Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant Do At Community Health Systems

Registered with the American Occupational Therapy Association (COTA

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How To Become A Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant

Occupational therapy assistants need an associate’s degree from an accredited occupational therapy assistant program. They also must be licensed in most states. Occupational therapy aides typically have a high school diploma or equivalent.

Education and Training

Occupational therapy assistants typically need an associate’s degree from an accredited program. Occupational therapy assistant programs are commonly found in community colleges and technical schools. In 2014, there were more than 200 occupational therapy assistant programs accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education, a branch of the American Occupational Therapy Association.

These programs generally require 2 years of full-time study and include instruction in subjects such as psychology, biology, and pediatric health. In addition to taking coursework, occupational therapy assistants must complete at least 16 weeks of fieldwork to gain hands-on work experience.

People interested in becoming an occupational therapy assistant should take high school courses in biology and health education. They also can increase their chances of getting into a community college or technical school program by doing volunteer work in a healthcare setting, such as a nursing care facility, an occupational therapist’s office, or a physical therapist’s office.

Occupational therapy aides typically have a high school diploma or equivalent. They are trained on the job under the supervision of more experienced assistants or aides. Training can last from several days to a few weeks and covers a number of topics, including the setting up of therapy equipment and infection control procedures, among others. Previous work experience in healthcare, as well as certifications in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and basic life support (BLS), may be helpful in getting a job.

Important Qualities

Compassion. Occupational therapy assistants and aides frequently work with patients who struggle with many of life’s basic activities. As a result, they should be compassionate and have the ability to encourage others.

Detail oriented. Occupational therapy assistants and aides must be able to quickly and accurately follow the instructions, both written and spoken, of an occupational therapist. In addition, aides must pay attention to detail when performing clerical tasks, such as helping a patient fill out an insurance form.  

Flexibility. Assistants must be flexible when treating patients. Because not every type of therapy will work for each patient, assistants may need to be creative when working with occupational therapists to determine the best type of therapy to use for achieving a patient’s goals.

Interpersonal skills. Occupational therapy assistants and aides spend much of their time interacting with patients and therefore should be friendly and courteous. They also should be able to communicate clearly with patients and with patients’ families to the extent of their training.

Physical strength. Assistants and aides need to have a moderate degree of strength because of the physical exertion required to assist patients. Constant kneeling, stooping, and standing for long periods also are part of the job.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Nearly all states require occupational therapy assistants to be licensed or registered. Licensure typically requires the completion of an accredited occupational therapy assistant education program, completion of all fieldwork requirements, and passing the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) exam. Some states have additional requirements.

Occupational therapy assistants must pass the NBCOT exam to use the title “Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant” (COTA). They must also take continuing education classes to maintain their certification.

The American Occupational Therapy Association also offers a number of specialty certifications for occupational therapy assistants who want to demonstrate their specialized level of knowledge, skills, and abilities in specialized areas of practice such as low vision or feeding, eating and swallowing.

Occupational therapy aides are not regulated.


Some occupational therapy assistants and aides advance by gaining additional education and becoming occupational therapists. A small number of occupational therapist “bridge” education programs are designed to qualify occupational therapy assistants to advance and become therapists.

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Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant jobs

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Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant Demographics


  • Female

  • Male

  • Unknown



  • White

  • Hispanic or Latino

  • Asian

  • Unknown

  • Black or African American

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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish


Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant

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Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant Education

Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant

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Top Skills for A Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant


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Top Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant Skills

  1. Assist Occupational Therapist
  2. ADL
  3. Treatment Plans
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Assist Occupational Therapists with implementing treatment plans designed to help clients function independently.
  • Facilitated ADLs and assisted residents with functional mobility to increase comfort and quality of life.FIELDWORK EXPERIENCE
  • Implemented individualized treatment plans including activities of daily living, therapeutic exercise and activities to meet their utmost level of independence.
  • Educated staff on adaptive equipment use, and performed student observations.
  • Evaluate the daily living skills and capacities for physically, developmentally and emotionally disabled patients.

Top Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant Employers

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