Occupational Therapy as a Career

By Ryan Squire

Occupational Therapy as a Career Demand for occupational therapists continues to increase as the American population ages. “The skills that are needed in every occupational therapy setting will only increase with the demand,” says Jeanna Conder, MBA, OTR/L, Director, Clinical Operations, RehabCare.

To help meet the increasing need for skilled occupational therapists, RehabCare has developed a Clinical Ladder program for ongoing training of occupational therapists.

The program has four levels:

  1. Champion
  2. Ladder 1 Mentor
  3. Ladder 2 Mentor
  4. Ladder 3 Mentor

“The Clinical Ladder program is a very clear pathway for upward mobility based on clinical skills,” says Conder. “Participants have to go through an application and interview process. Each level has different requirements.”

Requirements may include:

  • Completion of training in a certain number of clinical areas
  • A minimum number of years of experience
  • Training students on clinical rotations
  • Having articles published in professional journals or other publications

“The requirements get more stringent with each level,” Conder says.

Being selected to the Clinical Ladder program allows occupational therapists to provide training within their own facilities, as well as within their regions. “The program provides consistency among training in our facilities,” says Conder. “With the Clinical Ladder program, we know that what’s being taught in Colorado is the same as what’s being taught in Florida, Colorado, Texas, and all of the other states. And since our mentors are all therapists, what they’re teaching is based on what’s currently happening in the field, which should help to improve the quality of the care that’s being provided throughout the company.”

Conder says that in today’s market, occupational therapists have a variety of career options. “It’s a career that allows for flexibility in terms of placement and setting,” she says. “And at RehabCare, there are so many opportunities for improvement or advancement.”