Occupational Therapy Job Capacity Assessments: What Are They and Who Needs Them?

The objective of occupational therapy is to assist people restore and maintain their independence after they have suffered an illness or injury that has caused them to be disabled, a medical problem, or a disability. Occupational therapists use a variety of approaches to determine an individual’s true limitations, one of which is known as a job capacity assessment.

Job capacity assessments, or a job task analysis, can be used for people or working ages who are seeing an occupational therapist for an illness or injury that continues to affect their daily living, in particular their ability to perform the job they were doing prior to their injury or illness. But what is a job capacity assessment, how do they work, and who needs them? Find out below! 

What is a Job Capacity Assessment?

A job capacity assessment is a process in which an occupational therapist and the patient work together to determine what activities are essential for performing their pre-injury job, how well they are able to complete these activities, and whether there are any necessary accommodations. A job capacity assessment can also be used to determine whether or not it would be safe for the individual to return to their original occupation after an illness or injury has caused them difficulties in completing their duties.

How Do Job Capacity Assessments Work?

An occupational therapist will examine the tasks associated with an occupation through direct observation of the patient’s performance of that task in relation to standards set by government agencies. For example, if a person was working as a nurse before being injured, they may have been required at the time of employment to be able to lift between 20 and 50 pounds. That person’s occupational therapist would then watch them lifting various weights or objects, noting the following:

  • How close has the patient come to meeting national standards?
  • Which jobs were most challenging for them?
  • What kinds of accommodations may have allowed them to perform their job tasks more effectively? 

Who Needs a Job Capacity Assessment? 

People who are having difficulty performing everyday activities as a result of an illness or injury should contact their health care professional about scheduling a job capacity assessment. Once it is determined which part of the patient’s duties they are unable to complete, this information can be shared with their employer so that an appropriate accommodation can be made.

What Other Services Do Occupational Therapists Provide?

Occupational therapists provide many different services for their patients. These include helping people learn new ways to accomplish tasks; teaching children who are having trouble with school or social situations; and even helping seniors learn how to live independently for as long as possible. Overall, occupational therapists work to improve quality of life through any number of different ways that can include helping individuals with injuries or disabilities.

Occupational therapists are trained professionals who help their patients lead better lives through functional assessments and other methods tailored to each individual patient’s needs. Anyone who is considering an occupational therapist for themselves or a loved one should consider hiring someone who offers both on site and remote training – this will make it possible for the occupational therapist to work with their client no matter where they are located!

Sunshine Coast Occupational Therapists That Care

Coastal Rehab comprises a team of experienced occupational therapists, based on the Sunshine Coast, who make it their life’s work to help others achieve independence. They are committed to their patients and strive to help them live a full, happy life, as well as to achieve their career goals.

For job capacity assessments, Medico-Legal assistance, return to work services, and much more, contact Coastal Rehab today.

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