Occupational Therapy 650

OCTH 650. Occupational Therapy Leadership and Management

Credit Hours: 4

Prerequisite:  Successful completion of OCTH 640, 642, 644 and 646 or permission of the Chair.

Surveys leadership theories, types and skills, and provides opportunities for interaction with occupational therapy leaders.  Explores legal and ethical issues that affect occupational therapy practice today. Describes the primary roles of the occupational therapy manager within an organizational system, and develops entry-level competencies in administrative and management functions.


Detailed Description of Content of the Course

Topics include:

  • The occupational therapist as manager and leader
  • Leadership theories, types and styles
  • Legal issues affecting occupational therapy practice
  • Foundations of medical ethics and systems for resolving ethical dilemmas
  • Health-care policy issues and the occupational therapist as advocate
  • Strategic planning
  • Designing and equipping an occupational therapy clinic
  • Reimbursement systems and budgeting
  • Administrative documentation
  • Marketing and communications
  • Organizational effectiveness
  • Personnel management and team building (including collaborating with and supervising the occupational therapy assistant)
  • Program evaluation and quality improvement
  • Accreditation of health care programs
  • The occupational therapist as case manager
  • The occupational therapy consultant
  • Starting a private practice


Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

Readings, lectures and discussions will be supplemented by guest presentations by occupational therapy leaders and managers.  Students may assess their own leadership styles, design a multimedia presentation which promotes/advocates for the profession, develop a plan for a new occupational therapy program, and work in teams to analyze legal/ethical dilemmas. 


Goals and Objectives of the Course

At completion of this course, students will be able to:

  1. Discuss the importance of leadership and management skills in an environment of change;
  2. Discuss current health-care policy issues that influence the practice of occupational therapy, and the practitioner's role in policy development;
  3. Articulate the occupational therapist's responsibility to address changes in the health care system and to identify opportunities for the provision of services in new practice areas;
  4. Describe strategies to assist the consumer in gaining access to occupational therapy services;
  5. Explain how various practice settings affect the delivery of occupational therapy services;
  6. Describe and discuss the impact of contextual factors on the management of occupational therapy services;
  7. Describe the systems and structures that create federal and state legislation and regulation, and their implications and effects on practice;
  8. Discuss legal issues affecting the practice of occupational therapy (e.g., liability and professional malpractice, patient confidentiality, patient safety, Medicare fraud and abuse, providing services under contract);
  9. Discuss the ethical context in which humans choose and engage in occupations;
  10. Articulate the moral principles that are central to biomedical ethics and the practice of health care;
  11. Explain informal and formal ethical dispute-resolution systems that have jurisdiction over occupational therapy practice;
  12. Explain strategies for analyzing issues and making decisions to resolve personal and organizational ethical conflicts;
  13. Use AOTA standards and guidelines as guides for ethical decision-making;
  14. Discuss and justify the roles of the occupational therapist as a consultant and entrepreneur;
  15. Demonstrate the ability to plan, develop, organize and market an occupational therapy program or service;
  16. Articulate to audiences outside of occupational therapy the unique nature of occupation as viewed by the profession, and the value of occupation for clients;
  17. Apply the principles of the teaching-learning process to design an educational presentation for other health-care providers and the public;
  18. Demonstrate competence in the use of presentation software (e.g., Power Point);
  19. Describe the mechanisms, systems and techniques needed to properly maintain, organize and prioritize equipment/supply inventories and staff workloads;
  20. Discuss strategies for effective, competency-based legal and ethical supervision of occupational therapy and non-occupational therapy personnel;
  21. Compare and contrast the roles of the occupational therapist and occupational therapy assistant, and discuss the importance of and rationale for supervision and collaborative work between them;
  22. Identify and role-play techniques for supervising and collaborating with occupational therapy assistants on therapeutic interventions;
  23. Demonstrate knowledge of various reimbursement systems (federal, state, third-party, private-payer), appeals mechanisms, and documentation requirements that affect the practice of occupational therapy;
  24. Prepare documentation related to administrative tasks (e.g., incident reports, appeal letters, policies and procedures) which meets facility, local, state, federal and reimbursement standards;
  25. Given a program scenario, design processes for quality improvement;
  26. Describe the role of the occupational therapist in care coordination and case management;
  27. Understand when and how to use the consultative process with groups, programs, organizations or communities.


Assessment Measures

Participation in team activities, tests, and graded projects such as a business plan and marketing project may be used to assess the outcomes of the course.


Other Course Information


Review and Approval

February, 2009