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June 2020: Occupational Therapists and Coaching

Q: Can I be an occupational therapist and a life coach?

A: Yes, as an occupational therapist, you can be both. Occupational therapists (OTs) can use various modalities or approaches in their practice, including coaching, if they have the knowledge, skill, and judgement to do so and they have obtained additional training and/or certification (Standards for Assessments).

OTs should be able to explain the rationale behind using an approach in their practice and how the modality aligns with the scope of practice of the profession.

Q: What can I refer to myself as when talking to potential clients?

A: As an occupational therapist, you must first use the title “occupational therapist” or the designation OT Reg. (Ont.) so the public knows you are a registrant of the College (Standards for Use of Title).

To assist the public in identifying a specific area of practice, it is suitable to include an area of practice or focus. You may not imply, or use the term, “specialization”. Please see several examples below:

Jane Doe, Occupational Therapist
Professional Certified Coach (insert exact name of certification)

Jane Doe, OT Reg. (Ont.)
Practicing in leadership coaching

Q: What about currency hours?

A: If you are using coaching as a modality or an approach in the context of providing your occupational therapy services, you can use the hours towards maintaining currency.

If coaching is used outside of your occupational therapy practice or as a separate business, outside occupational therapy, these hours would not be applied towards currency. It is the responsibility of the occupational therapist to make sure they clearly communicate to the public:

  • what services are being provided
  • their designation/training,
  • their accountability to the College as a regulated health professional.

Occupational therapists are accountable for maintaining professional and ethical conduct at all times, and not just while providing occupational therapy services.

If you have additional questions, please feel welcome to contact the Practice Resource Service at 416.214.1177 ext. 240 or email [email protected].

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