In our country, this health care field called ergotherapy is called "Occupational Therapy", "Ergotherapy" or "Ergothérapie" abroad. Ergotherapists work with people who are both healthy and have health problems in order to improve their health. When an ergotherapist prepares a therapy plan, it does not stop at the physical causes that just cause the disorder. Social, economic, and biologic responses that cause functional impairment are also considered. Ergotherapy is involved in many disciplines related to health. Physiotherapy, psychiatry, rehabilitation, orthosis-prosthesis, assistive technology and social service areas are the main subjects.
The concept of functional performance lies in the basic philosophy of ergotherapy. The ergotherapist should take into account all the factors that make up performance when considering functional performance. The ergotherapist works systematically through a series of actions known as the ergotherapy process. It assesses, intervenes and results in the basic elements of this process.
Ergotherapists can work with many different populations in many different environments. As a result, they can specialize in different areas. In different countries and different health systems, ergotherapists work in 3 main areas of application: physical, mental and social.
Ergotherapists can work with different populations, diagnoses, and specialty areas in each application area. These include pediatrics, mental health, community health, healthy aging, rehabilitation, work, industry and rehabilitation technology. One of the areas where ergotherapists work most intensively is hand rehabilitation. Today, most of the therapists working in the field of hand rehabilitation are ergotherapists. However, there are a large number of ergotherapists working in basic medical fields such as orthopedics, neurology and rheumatology.
Ergotherapists have specific types of work that are specific to each application area. For example, ergotherapists working in the field of pediatrics can take part in the development of writing skills in school-age children, in the acquisition of skills in children with developmental disorders, in the provision of individualized care in children with sensory / perceptual impairment and in the psychosocial needs of a child. Similarly, an ergotherapist working in community health can play a role in the prevention of diseases and injuries, in the prevention of secondary disorders due to illness or injury, in the improvement of general health conditions, in reducing inequality in reaching health services, in improving the quality of life and in promoting healthy living.
Despite the fact that the ergotherapy training at the undergraduate level has just begun in our country, the task definition has been made without giving the first graduates. According to this definition, ergotherapists have attained a suitable legal environment to use the universal knowledge and skills they gained in the course of their education in our country.
The definition of the ergotherapist's duty in the Regulation on the Jobs and Terms of Service of Health Professions and Other Health Care Workers published in Official Gazette No. 29007 dated May 22, 2014 is as follows.
Occupational Therapist (Ergoterapist)
a) It is recommended to maximize the performance of the individual by evaluating his / her functional potential in home, work and school environments and to ensure harmony with the environment.
b) Evaluate the functional limitations of individuals, resulting from illness and disability, and carry out their daily activities and practices.
c) Evaluate the emotional, psychosocial, developmental and physical competences of the patients using measurements and tests related to the profession.
d) Identify and teach the methods and tools to provide independence in daily life activities.
d) Conducts and implements rehabilitation programs related to the use of professional, social, artistic and educational activities individually and as a group.
e) Sensory perception motor integration training and occupational and occupational therapy in these fields.
f) Evaluate personal environmental and activity performance barriers that affect people's collective participation.
g) To conduct the evaluation and rehabilitation procedures necessary for collecting the excluded individuals.