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Texas Occupational Therapy Referrals

Is a referral required to provide OT services?

Yes. Intervention for a medical condition by an occupational therapy practitioner requires a referral from a licensed referral source.

Are there exceptions to the referral requirement?

Occupational therapists may evaluate the client to determine the need for occupational therapy services without a referral. However, a referral must be requested at any time during the evaluation process when necessary to ensure the safety and welfare of the client.

A screening, consultation, or monitored services may be performed by an occupational therapy practitioner without a referral.

The evaluation or intervention for a non-medical condition does not require a referral.

Which providers can issue the referral?

Implementation of direct occupational therapy to a person for a specific health care condition must be based on a referral from:

    • A physician licensed by a state board of medical examiners;
    • A dentist licensed by a state board of dental examiners;
    • A chiropractor licensed by a state board of chiropractic examiners;
    • A podiatrist licensed by a state board of podiatric medical examiners; or
    • Another qualified, licensed health care professional who is authorized to refer for health care services within the scope of the professional's license.

Can a referral be issued verbally?

Yes. If a referral is transmitted verbally, it must be documented by the authorized personnel who receives the referral. In this section, "authorized personnel" means staff members authorized by the employer or occupational therapist to receive referrals transmitted verbally.


Tex. Occ. Code § 454.21

3 Tex. Admin. Code §372.1

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