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Alabama Occupational Therapy Aides

What is the definition of an aide?

A person who assists in the delivery of occupational therapy, who works under direct on-site supervision of an occupational therapist or occupational therapy assistant, or both, and whose activities require an understanding of occupational therapy but do not require professional or advanced training in the basic anatomical, biological, psychological, and social sciences involved in the practice of occupational therapy. No activity listed as the practice of occupational therapy may be performed by an occupational therapy aide.

What can an aide do?

Duties or functions which occupational therapy aides may perform include, but are not limited to:

    • Routine department maintenance task;
    • Transportation of patients/clients;
    • Preparation or setting up of treatment equipment and work area;
    • Taking care of patient's/client's personal needs during treatment; (e) Clerical, secretarial, administrative activities.

An aide/support personnel may assist in the delivery of occupational therapy; however, may not provide direct patient treatment.

What is an aide expressly prohibited from doing?

Duties or functions which occupational therapy aides shall not perform include, but are not limited to:

    • Interpret referrals or prescriptions for occupational therapy services;
    • Perform evaluative procedures;
    • Develop, plan, adjust, or modify treatment procedures;
    • Act on behalf of the occupational therapist in any matter related to direct patient care which requires judgment or decision making.
    • Act independently or without supervision of an occupational therapist.

What are the responsibilities of the OT when delegating to an aide?

A licensed occupational therapist may delegate to occupational therapy aides only specific tasks which are neither evaluative, assistive, task selective nor recommending in nature, and only after insuring that the aide has been appropriately trained for the performance of the task.

Any duties assigned to an occupational therapy aide must be determined and appropriately supervised by a licensed occupational therapist and must not exceed the level of training, knowledge, skill, and competence of the individual being supervised. The licensed occupational therapist is totally and wholly responsible for the acts or actions performed by any occupational therapy aide functioning in the occupational therapy setting.

Reference

Ala. Code ยง34-39-3

Ala. Admin. Code r. 625-X-8-.03

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