Like every regulated health care profession in Ontario, occupational therapists (OTs) have a wide range of professional obligations and responsibilities. Being accountable for meeting these requirements is one reason why OTs can be self-regulated professionals.
OTs must be accountable to the people they care for and serve, their peers, other regulated professions, and their regulator – the College of Occupational Therapists of Ontario. As members of the College, OTs have a duty to:
- provide the accepted standard of care for patients and clients
- report suspected cases of child abuse, sexual abuse or incapacity
- maintain the rules of privacy and confidentiality to respect patients
- serve the best interests of patients by working with other professionals through interdisciplinary care and collaboration
- put the needs of patients and clients first by maintaining professional boundaries
- ensure that patients provide informed consent before a treatment or procedure
- improve their skills and knowledge through ongoing professional development
- hold appropriate professional liability insurance
- maintain the required number of practice hours (600 in three years)
- inform the College of changes to their address, email, employment, professional liability insurance and more, within 30 days of the change, to update information and make sure current information is available on the public register (list of OTs in Ontario)
By fulfilling these fundamental obligations and responsibilities, OTs meet the expectations of the profession.