There are several reasons occupational therapy assistants are in high demand in the U.S. The past few years have brought changes to the delivery of health insurance options, and these have included expanded opportunities for patients to access occupational therapy. In addition, the large baby boomer generations continue to age and form a block of clients who need rehabilitative services. Lastly, services are more available for people living with disabilities, including children, which is another aspect of care provided within the occupational therapy field.
For these reasons and others, the occupational therapy assistant program at The Praxis Institute provides excellent employment opportunities for students. In Hialeah, FL, we offer outstanding training. If you find yourself attracted to this important healthcare career, there are a variety of settings and specialties for occupational therapy assistants.
Economic Outlook for Occupational Therapy Assistants
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, occupational therapy assistants work with patients to develop, recover, improve, and maintain their daily living and working skills. The median annual pay for these services in May 2021 was $61,730. Furthermore, this occupation is projected to grow 34 percent between 2020 and 2030, with over 8,000 jobs opening for both occupational therapy assistants and aides projected every year through the end of the decade.
Workplace Settings for Occupational Therapy Assistants
Graduates of occupational therapy assistant programs find work in a variety of healthcare environments, including:
- Offices of healthcare practitioners, such as occupational and physical therapists
- Nursing homes and assisted living facilities
- Home health care providers
- Educational settings and schools
- One-on-one care for individuals and families
Requirements for an Occupational Therapist Assistant Career
Occupational therapy assistants are in demand throughout the U.S., and their services are needed in both urban and rural areas. Admission to an accredited occupational therapy assistant program is the starting point for this career. Students must complete an associate degree program, as well as gain experience through fieldwork.
At The Praxis Institute, enrollment is held twice a year, and the occupational therapy assistant program is accredited by Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE). Students attend the program full-time for 20 months, completing 75 credit hours. Students are offered flexibility in their schedules with courses offered online. The in-person fieldwork experience requirement consists of 19 credit hours.
Courses in the catalog include basics, such as college algebra and English composition, as well as specific healthcare training classes and labs, such as:
- Anatomy & Physiology
- Introduction to Occupational Therapy
- Functional Anatomy & Kinesiology
- Activity Analysis
- Therapeutic Media & Group Therapy
- Patient Care Procedures
Occupational Therapy Planning & Techniques Classes
Specific areas of occupational therapy are explored within the curriculum, highlighting these three areas:
- Traditional & Emerging Practice
- Adolescents & Pediatrics
- Mental Health
Licenses and Certifications for Occupational Therapy Assistants
Graduates of the occupational therapy assistant program at The Praxis Institute are eligible to sit for the national certification examination, which is administered by National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). While states require licenses for occupational therapy assistants, these often are based on the certification exam.
Start a Rewarding Career in High Demand
Occupational therapy is a healthcare profession that helps people gain more control over their daily lives, whether they are hurt in an accident or born with a disability. With increased attention paid to the benefits of this therapy, demand for occupational therapy assistants is steadily growing and projected to keep increasing until at least 2030. Is it time to plan for a career that makes a difference? Explore the many possibilities for work in this caring profession. From injured veterans, the aged, and employees with overuse injuries, to children with disabilities and speech impairments, the possibilities are many and varied for occupational therapy assistants today.
Apply to Our Occupational Therapy Assistant Program
The Praxis Institute in Hialeah, FL, offers exceptional instruction and field experiences for students in the Associate of Science degree program for Occupational Therapy Assistants. We offer flexible schedules, online learning options, and competitive prices. Contact us for more information about our associate degree programs.