OT burnout

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A.W in Toronto, Ontario

61 months ago

Hello,

Yes, I have secured a job in a long term care facility. Its only part-time, but I feel its a foot in the door that could eventually lead to my goal in working in mental health. Keep searching, volunteering, and networking. And... keep your head up... do things that keep you positive, and hopefully that energy will attract some good employment prospects.

Its a hard time in every industry in this city, but a hard place to give up on.

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Sara in Staten Island, New York

61 months ago

For those of you feeling burnt out and overwhelmed, you may want to check out this book: "48 days to the work you love." By Dan Miller. If you have been practicing for 20 or more years, believe me you have some information and skills that you could use to make money that may not include direct patient care. He also has a podcast you can find on itunes. He is very encouraging. I am working through this right now, and I've come up with some ideas.

I totally agree with the "compassion fatigue" theory. I wonder if there are any resources on how to deal with this.

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Suzy in Sherman Oaks, California

61 months ago

It depends on what your of setting is. I prefer pediatrics, although it appears there is more money at SNF's. One was going to pay me over $70,000 for a COTA position.
I could NEVER imagine working full-time in a 24 hr nursing home.

Does anyone have any thoughts about school based positions?
Good- benefits, stability, vacation, sick, hours
Bad- traveling, envirnoment, possibility of higher caseload

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OT school dropout in Owings Mills, Maryland

61 months ago

burned out in Clayton, North Carolina said: i have to say i agree with the above comments. I have been regretting my decision to be an OT for almost a year now (and i've only been in the field for 3 years). I can't seem to find the setting that fits me as well as pays enough. Enjoyed school based therapy but that does not pay enough.

My biggest issue I have is that I think OT education really sucks. It seems like every school's program is different or has a different focus. I think OT school spends WAY TO MUCH time on Theory and not on practice. I am three years in and still feel like I don't know what I am doing.

For anybody out there that has changed careers, what have you done? I need ideas really. The dislike for the job/career affects my personal life no matter how hard I try. I need something that makes me happier. Just wanted ideas.

Thanks.

I didn't finish OT school (master's degree) because I figured out early on that it wasn't what I expected and I wouldn't feel challenged the way I wanted to be challenged by my job. I decided to go back to where I began, which is doing lab work. I worked in public health (on the lab side) for a few years, and now I'm temping and finishing my master's degree in biotech. That way I can keep getting more lab skills and not stagnate. Eventually I want to get into developing educational materials or writing. Don't worry about what other people think of your feelings or choices. It's your life and you only learn from your experiences which will make you stronger in the end because you will be happier for making the changes you want to make. You are the only one who can take charge of your future and happiness and life is too short to be miserable.

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MelB in Denton, Texas

60 months ago

I love to help the special needs, I have a nurturing personality, and I am a Jr in Pre-OT, i am surprised about allthat I am hearing, can you please give me details of what you are expected to do on a daily?

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Suzie Que in Hawaii

60 months ago

Depends where you are working. In a hospital setting and a SNF, you will primarily be working on ADLs, such as dressing, showering, toileting, eating, etc. In a school setting, you will be consulting with parents and teachers on how to best serve students with special needs. In home-based early intervention, you will be helping children catch up to their peers developmentally so that they are able to do the typical occupations of children (play, feeding, etc.). Hand therapists work with patients who've experienced trauma or undergone surgery in their hands by applying modalities, passively ranging joints, etc. Those are only a few examples. The day to day jobs of OTs varies greatly setting to setting. I recommend you shadow a few OTs in different settings before deciding on it as a career.

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ot in Boca Raton, Florida

60 months ago

rose in New York, New York said: hi, i'm considering going to school for OT (instead of RN) but I was surprised to read your saying you may 'have to go back to diapering and toileting old people'. is that expected of OTs also? Please say no. Do you know if it's easy finding a job (i'm sure not like a nurse) or hard to come by? I'm planning to relocate to florida and i want to make sure i will be able to find a job down there. anything you can share is greatly appreciated! :>

No that's exactly what we do.Every setting is a system and every system has a sub-system.Schools are under staffed and ex[ect you do "double up"on kids to make out for it.Some OT's are burned out badly however keep on going for fear of loosing a job and moving on to the next level.Home health is less crazy you get the opportunity to ssee a patient one-on one and really get to see some difference.The ot books can be a bit "idealistic" but the real world is a lot different.Then take you have a nasty supervisor overpowering and choosing her "favorites".Anyone would get burned out.I love what my profession stands for,but am getting discouraged of the reality we face on a day to day to make a living.Where's the"real"people?

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

burned out in Clayton, North Carolina said: I am in the "beginning" of my career. I'm just finding that I dread going to my job a lot. I've tried different settings, but I just feel like I don't like the field anymore. I was just wondering if anybody knew of different areas of OT or something outside of OT be related that might be a better fit. Any suggesstions are welcome.

Yowzaa! Sadly I can't give a positive review. I thought I'd hold-out for another outpatient post-surgical type COTA position. That began one-year ago. In 1998 when I graduated, the system had just changed and you took what you could get. This landed a grown man with a plethora of mechanical and audio experience in Mental Health; a total waste of talent. Here it is, 2010, and I can't buy a job. Even head-hunters can't find a position! I agree with the respect issues of OT I've read herein. And I also agree with the greater respect for PT. Personally, PT and OT need to combine in the USA. We need to grandfather in post graduates and get it over with. If I was a PTA I'd have the pick of outpatient jobs, but as it stands, I may be working at Home Depot or a grocery store very soon. If anyone would like to ask me further questions, I'll be happy to assist as I can. Best to all of you. MERGE OT AND PT IN THE USA!

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ardentanglophile in Bellevue, Washington

59 months ago

Whoa! I see you are close to the Seattle area. You mean you can't get a COTA position? HOw come there are so many positions listed on this website. Are you sceptical as I am that there are that many jobs for COTAS here? Would you take a SNF position?

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

Bellevue, There are jobs, agreed. But many of them are not pleasant nor fall into the realm of professionalism I have always strived for. When I graduated, one of the pieces of advice I received from Instructors was not to take just any job, but to find the right fit. Great advice in theory but poor in practice. (no pun intended). Sure, I can get a SNF/LTC position! But I find death/dying and forced therapy upon persons just so they can continue to remain in a facility, less than agreeable. Are there jobs in Seattle area? I guess. But I am being straight up when I tell you I put out an OUTPATIENT COTA resume all over the internet for the head-hunters to attack. All I get is SNF after SNF, no OUTPATIENT, Work-Hardening, Industrial, etc. No, just LTC. The system and times have been changing for years. PT rules the Kitsap area. I sound somewhat irritated and, I am. If you do OT, get ready for a tough go. My opinions after 10 years trying to make something "fit."Thank-you. :)

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

Bellevue, Please excuse me, I'd like to add a bit more. Also take into account many jobs are listed all over the USA. Are you ready to fork out cash and jump through each State's hoops for 13 weeks? Some State's such as HI, require you only have a license in a state (for COTA's, not sure for the OTR). For those who do not, how long does it take? How long do you wait? How much cash do you throw at the fire? Okay, maybe a little dramatic but I am trying to make point. All the OT practitioners in the USA would do well to merge with PT. Insurance likes PT more, this is what I believe the future will be. I would direct anyone interested to go to PT/PTA, not OT/COTA. Keep smiling, Walmart has health benefits!

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ardentanglophile in Redmond, Washington

59 months ago

You know, last year I started at Green River's program and I read something almost verbatim to what you said in your post "But I find death/dying and forced therapy upon persons just so they can continue to remain in a facility, less than agreeable." And that sent me running. Now a year later, with less than good job prospects, I am back trying to get into their part time progam. I just want a job where I will be busy all the time, help someone, and I hope I can turn a blind eye to the unattractive aspects of the job! I think I would rather do outpatient too!

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

GRCC part-timer,
You need to go to the PTA program next door! Are you hearing me? I wish I had and now it is too late. I'm in the wrong discipline, my life's skills I intended to be fused with OT may never be realized. Drop into a PT clinic and see what a PTA does. Stop into a SNF and see what a COTA does. Mark my words, if you like the Outpatient type of work, go to PTA! That said, there are COTA Outpatient jobs, but they are difficult to find. Thank-you for writing.

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OTA student in Bonney Lake, Washington

59 months ago

I'm studying to be a COTA in the WA area.I have family members who are RN's, PA's,ER tech's, MA's,SLP and PT.Put them in a family circle and its a complain fest of who has it worst!! The reality we are in the worst times imaginable for finding employment in all of the sectors.I ended up on this boat b/c I lost my job over a yr ago in sales and I hated everything about it. The # crunching, the micro managing, the conference calls etc. Before this I worked in hospitality (who hasn't) and we all can remember how much that sucked. So this time around I realized a couple of things cause I had a lot of time off, the saying "work to live, dont live to work" is dead on! Just about every job out there, even the non profits, have there issues.I know when I was younger just about everybody in my H.S put on their career choices : Business, PT or Marine Biologist. Sounds great!!!!!Let me know how that works out for you...I'm not picky, just need a job.

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

Sounds like you have a great family to surround you (and bi*ch with) LOL. I'm a bit jaded, ultimately I am a realist. I am trying very hard to find an Outpatient COTA job and having zero luck so far. I'm told to "hang in there" but I'm about at the end of the game. All I can say, without advice, is understand what you are getting into and don't be afraid to do something else if need be. I recall some of the students I graduated with returning to sales jobs, paid more and more pleasant. Go figure. Pour one for me when with the family.

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OTurbo in staten island, New York

59 months ago

I have to agree and say that most jobs are in peds and SNFs. Hardly any outpt jobs for COTAs AND OTRs. Usually if there is an OT in oupt, he/she is a CHT. Most of these outpt places are "shake and bake" type places....pt every 15 minutes mainly looking for some modalities and hardly getting any good manual therapy. I have no idea how there are SOOOO many outpt physical therapy clinics. If you have any doubts while in the OTA program, don't be afraid to listen to your gut and drop out. It could determine or ruin the next few years of your life if its not what you had expected.

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

Indeed you are right. I came from an Outpatient facility and saw hand/shoulder/cervical/ wound patients all day long. I was likely doing the same work an OTR/CHT was doing, minus an initial evaluation. My stomach is in knots thinking of working in a lesser facility. Maybe I should be lucky I did it at all. As I have said in other posts, I'd of been better suited to PT. It's too bad I can't have a PT as a clinical supervisor. The laws keep people like myself from providing quality care to people who need it. I guess I'm an idiot, the therapy business is full of red-tape and politics. Maybe I expected too much.

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Ota in Bonney Lake, Washington

59 months ago

inthemix in Bremerton, Washington said: Sounds like you have a great family to surround you (and bi*ch with) LOL. I'm a bit jaded, ultimately I am a realist. I am trying very hard to find an Outpatient COTA job and having zero luck so far. I'm told to "hang in there" but I'm about at the end of the game. All I can say, without advice, is understand what you are getting into and don't be afraid to do something else if need be. I recall some of the students I graduated with returning to sales jobs, paid more and more pleasant. Go figure. Pour one for me when with the family.

Yeah I get the feeling jaded part...are you currently unemployed or in transition? Sales is a temp high of making decent money...

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

ROF,LOL! Am I unemployed or in transition? Good one! If I am talking to friends, unemployed. If a single woman, a professional transition! I was a RE agent years ago, and you know where that business is. I admit to be in quite a mess at the moment. Surprised with difficulty to acquire a well-suited COTA position. Unable to sell a house I left sitting vacant. Some think I'm lucky, and considering I could be living under an overpass, maybe they are right. But honestly, I have diligently tried to tap into a "real" therapy position with no luck yet. Recruiters are vultures for the most part. Have only talked with a couple which seem to understand it is important to have a "good fit" versus taking anything. I am considering working at a grocery store or even a home-store. I'd work as an Aide in a PT clinic if they'd have me but I seriously doubt I could sell that one. I'm in an extended professional transition. Thanks for suggestions.

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ardentanglophile in Bellevue, Washington

59 months ago

I know you advised me to go along the PTA route, but that would require me to re-do most of my prequisites, and I wonder if PTA is more physically taxing than being a COTA? So although I considered PTA, it is not as viable path for me as pursing COTA.

Since you are an experienced COTA, and can you shed light on all the jobs posted on indeed.com. When there is a position open at a SNF or rehab clinci, does the employer post with multiple agencies? I notice that sometimes there are two or three postings in the same area ( it's possible of course that they could be different jobs), but when I looked at the Washington State's employment security department website it said that there about 1012 new openings per year in this field. Does what the ESD say correspond do you think with what indeed.com has posted?

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ardentanglophile in Bellevue, Washington

59 months ago

I apologize everyone for mispellings and grammar. Oops. I try to catch errors! Believe me!

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

I'll do my best to keep my opinion out of my answers for you.

"you advised me to go along the PTA route, but that would require me to re-do most of my prequisites, and I wonder if PTA is more physically taxing than being a COTA? So although I considered PTA, it is not as viable path for me as pursing COTA."

End of story if you can't go back. More taxing? Since I've never been a PTA, I can't say for sure. BUT, I have worked along side of PTA's and PT's. I worked just as hard or harder. It's probably a wash as far as effort. I was working in peds in a school when a 13 year old girl went bezerk. I and a teacher had to wrestler her to the ground and hold her until police came. In mental health I've had to carry-down men with chairs over their heads. It just depends. In SNF's you may be transferring a 300 pound human, they might fall. Do you get the picture? I have performed ROM to frozen shoulders, and put everything I had into it. Sometimes seemed barbaric!

Since you are an experienced COTA, and can you shed light on all the jobs posted on indeed.com. When there is a position open at a SNF or rehab clinci, does the employer post with multiple agencies? I notice that sometimes there are two or three postings in the same area ( it's possible of course that they could be different jobs), but when I looked at the Washington State's employment security department website it said that there about 1012 new openings per year in this field. Does what the ESD say correspond do you think with what indeed.com has posted?

Understand something very important I have learned: Recruiters and their Co's are also known as Head-hunters and Vultures for a reason. There are jobs listed which may not even exist. They are lost-leaders, bait-n-switch. Yup, like a bad used car dealer. Sorry but true. I recently found a listing whereas I questioned the recruiter, an they confirmed basically what i just told you. They are in business to place people. <CONTINUED>

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

<CONTINUED> Since you are an experienced COTA, and can you shed light on all the jobs posted on indeed.com. When there is a position open at a SNF or rehab clinci, does the employer post with multiple agencies? I notice that sometimes there are two or three postings in the same area ( it's possible of course that they could be different jobs), but when I looked at the Washington State's employment security department website it said that there about 1012 new openings per year in this field. Does what the ESD say correspond do you think with what indeed.com has posted?

Understand something very important I have learned: Recruiters and their Co's are also known as Head-hunters and Vultures for a reason. There are jobs listed which may not even exist. They are lost-leaders, bait-n-switch. Yup, like a bad used car dealer. Sorry but true. I recently found a listing whereas I questioned the recruiter, an they confirmed basically what i just told you. They are in business to place people. I can't say indeed.com is just a compiled list of many. If you are interested I recently connected with a 20+ year recruiter, I will get you their name and number. Your choice. Am I answering you in unbiased manner as possible?

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

You're not in school here, no problem. All good. :)

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ardentanglophile in Bellevue, Washington

59 months ago

Right, I have worked as a CNA before, and I know how physically demanding it can be. I hope that I will not be required as a COTA to make an occupied bed with an immobile 300lb person like I did as a CNA. Ok, I expect whether it be as a PTA or COTA\ that there will be some very physically moments.

I think your point about the recruiters is well taken. I have heard that about recruiters or temp agencies where they post ads just to build up their database of qualified candidates. Sad but true. It's really, really hard out there and that is why I am trying this because at 45, I find my job prospects are meagre.

I can start a COTA program in the Spring and get moving along. PTA programs seem to be more competitive and I would have to redo my prerequisites. I really don't want to do that now. So either I follow through with a COTA program or.....thank you for your input. I think you are being unbiased here. Sorry your research for outpatient position is yielding few leads.

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

You are concerned at your age? I'm 52 and scared to death! Just a bit more about travel. It sounds exciting, and I'm sure it can be. Be aware of the reality. You are being paid a premium and may not be treated as pleasant as you may want. As a heart-on-my-sleeve person, though I can be a sharp talking stand my ground guy, I don't like to be that way. I'm looking for a perm position. I did travel to OH for a Select Medical position, total deceit, I do not recommend Select. I was ignorant and paid the price. I interviewed a LTC in Henderson NV, laughed, took over the interview and got the Interviewer to admit the burnout was about one-year or less for OT staff, 80% or better quotas. Herding cattle in other words. You sound like you'll be okay, just ask the questions now, investigate the job-base now, and try to network a job way way ahead of time. Go where you plan to practice or risk losing the skills you learnt ther in skool.

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OTA student in Bonney Lake, Washington

59 months ago

inthemix in Bremerton, Washington said: You are concerned at your age? I'm 52 and scared to death! Just a bit more about travel. It sounds exciting, and I'm sure it can be. Be aware of the reality. You are being paid a premium and may not be treated as pleasant as you may want. As a heart-on-my-sleeve person, though I can be a sharp talking stand my ground guy, I don't like to be that way. I'm looking for a perm position. I did travel to OH for a Select Medical position, total deceit, I do not recommend Select. I was ignorant and paid the price. I interviewed a LTC in Henderson NV, laughed, took over the interview and got the Interviewer to admit the burnout was about one-year or less for OT staff, 80% or better quotas. Herding cattle in other words. You sound like you'll be okay, just ask the questions now, investigate the job-base now, and try to network a job way way ahead of time. Go where you plan to practice or risk losing the skills you learnt ther in skool.

This is great advice

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OTA student in Bonney Lake, Washington

59 months ago

inthemix in Bremerton, Washington said: You are concerned at your age? I'm 52 and scared to death! Just a bit more about travel. It sounds exciting, and I'm sure it can be. Be aware of the reality. You are being paid a premium and may not be treated as pleasant as you may want. As a heart-on-my-sleeve person, though I can be a sharp talking stand my ground guy, I don't like to be that way. I'm looking for a perm position. I did travel to OH for a Select Medical position, total deceit, I do not recommend Select. I was ignorant and paid the price. I interviewed a LTC in Henderson NV, laughed, took over the interview and got the Interviewer to admit the burnout was about one-year or less for OT staff, 80% or better quotas. Herding cattle in other words. You sound like you'll be okay, just ask the questions now, investigate the job-base now, and try to network a job way way ahead of time. Go where you plan to practice or risk losing the skills you learnt ther in skool.

This is great advice!

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FYI in Douglasville, Georgia

59 months ago

annie in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania said: I do not enjoy the physical aspect of working with sick people, and am just not into self care teaching.Dressing, feeding, bathing, toileting is just a chore to me. I guess I did not knowingly go into this thinking about ADLs and how boring this would be after awhile. I do not enjoy taking people to the toilet. I actually have an adversion to bodily functions like seeing feces, vomit and blood. If you like bodily secretions, and other yucky stuff you will enjoy this job. But for me I would prefer a nice clean job not involved with disease and gore.

Wow! You really weren't thinking at all...

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

No big deal, time to move to a different job or area of practice. I don't like that part either, never have. I got to enjoy Outpatient work, though open wounds did gross me out sometimes. Some LTC facilities are different than others. I was going to say it's a crap-shoot but then I don't want to offend with potty humor.

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Unsure in Brewster, New York

59 months ago

I am a new grad and am 6 months in working at an outpatient peds clinic with children and adults with autism and mild to profound intellectual disabilities (MR). I find the workload over whelming (SOAP notes every encounter, billing forms, TX plans every 3 months, chart review weekly) I am also constantly hunting down doc for r/x. Many of my clients are aggressive and have hit, kicked, and attempted to choke me. These same clients are extremely difficult to engage in any therapeutic activity as they are aggressive and non participatory. (But I am not allowed to discharge these pts)

Also, I find the mandatory 2hr evaluations and 30 min tx session tedious - sometimes we're done before the time is up and I feel like I have to milk it for the remainder of the time or I can't bill, which makes me feel fake.

My question is: Is 6 months too soon to move on?

This job is clearly not for me, but I am confused about where I would go from here. Is every clinical application of OT mandatory tx times in order to bill? Does any one have examples of OT's who have turned their degree into a non direct care career?

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Suzie Que in Hawaii

59 months ago

In schools, you are required to see every child on your caseload 15-30 minutes per week, month, whatever is on the IEP, but there is no "billing" in the school system either and you won't have to do much documentation. Not to say it isn't overwhelming, but it is different from outpatient peds. However, there are usually less resources in the schools as well.

Acute settings require a much shorter 8 minutes to bill for treatment. Perhaps you would find that less tedious. However, it is still a very fast paced setting, so still might be overwhelming.

Maybe try another area of OT? What did you do your fieldwork in? Was there another area you liked?

That said, perhaps OT isn't right for you. At the hospital I work in, there are openings for OTs in "evidenced-based practice assurance" where you would not be involved with direct care, but rather do research on treatments for OT, PT, and SLP. There are also openings in clinical informatics for OTs, which would be more on the IT side of things. Doesn't really float my boat, but perhaps it would be worth your while to look into non direct care areas such as the ones I mentioned.

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OTurbo in staten island, New York

59 months ago

Unsure in Brewster, New York said: I am a new grad and am 6 months in working at an outpatient peds clinic with children and adults with autism and mild to profound intellectual disabilities (MR). I find the workload over whelming (SOAP notes every encounter, billing forms, TX plans every 3 months, chart review weekly) I am also constantly hunting down doc for r/x. Many of my clients are aggressive and have hit, kicked, and attempted to choke me. These same clients are extremely difficult to engage in any therapeutic activity as they are aggressive and non participatory. (But I am not allowed to discharge these pts)

Also, I find the mandatory 2hr evaluations and 30 min tx session tedious - sometimes we're done before the time is up and I feel like I have to milk it for the remainder of the time or I can't bill, which makes me feel fake.

My question is: Is 6 months too soon to move on?

This job is clearly not for me, but I am confused about where I would go from here. Is every clinical application of OT mandatory tx times in order to bill? Does any one have examples of OT's who have turned their degree into a non direct care career?

Non-direct care can be consulting, managerial duties, just doing evaluations, etc. As a new grad, 6 months isn't too short to move on if you really can't hack it. What's most important is realizing what are your limits. Maybe try a different population/ setting....hospital, SNF, schools.

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

So sad but so accurate! It is NOT too soon to move on! Get out, this is reality of the business. You'll find the same in all mental-health and school programs. These clients are often mandated by law to receive treatment. As far as getting whacked, yes indeedly-do, it is. Do not try and change the system, move on. Where? Just do something, anything.

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

These are the matters no one will speak about, "milk-it" comment. Everyone runs into this dilemma. You are expected to use better time management, smile, keep moth shut, next. You are not a fake. Your motivation may be out of sync with reality. I used to be a hell-go-getter! It got me nowhere. I am compassionate to what you say and get it. Just the same, you'll find this in many jobs, not just therapy. The world is imperfect. The social-service end, like DD, Mental health, etc., are typical to a less concrete system. Consider getting out of these types of service. What else can you do?, not sure. When you find out send me an email, I'd love to know as I am tired of the system such as it is.

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Unsure in New York in New York, New York

59 months ago

Thank you all for your helpful and proactive comments. I really appreciate that my comment was understood, accepted, and responded to.

SuzieQue: Can you tell me more about evidenced-based practice assurance and IT-OT jobs? These are options I have not heard of and am very interested as I have always enjoyed research. Do you have a job description or any more information about opportunity in this area?

OTurbo: 8min tx for acute care also seems like another possible option (faster pace, but maybe more meaningful treatment time). Have you worked in this setting? What did you think?

If anyone has any other ideas or can share about setting that have less demands on the amount of tx time you spend with a client, I would greatly like to hear about it.

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

The IT/OT jobs? Hmmmm, I dreamt of working in Assistive tech when I was a new grad. Those days came and went. A very rare job. Most of the AT work I did see was oriented towards children. I created a sizable computer program at Mental Hosp at worked at, my own expense, effort, you name it. Those days are gone too. I heard Minnesota had a progressive mental health program. Word was an OTR went their and they had COMPUTERS, for employees to use! WOW!!! (not kidding, WA St didn't have them) I was odd for typing my notes and instituting a computer. I worked in WA State at the time and their system was antiquated then, probably still is. I tried to change the system, I did a little but at my personal expense, I've never recovered from the hell I went through. I'll never do again and recommend it is easier to just quit and find another job elsewhere. I never solved the puzzle you seem to be asking to be solved. Wish I could just provide a definitive solution.

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Suzy in Sherman Oaks, California

59 months ago

discouragedOT in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania said: I am also in the OT assistant forum. I have burnout to the nth degree. I dread going to work.

I feel the same way. I have been in the field for over 10 years now. I feel as rewarding this profession is, it completely drains all of your energy. Working from pediatrics (ages 6 mos to the elderly up until 95+ yrs old) conversing with patients, professionals, families, etc and assisting them back to their functional status is an incredibly rewarding, challenging field which makes you feel so good you're helping others. But, after some time, it becomes too much. When is it too much?
Any thoughts as to how to stay in O.T. while taking time for yourself?

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Suzie Que in Hawaii

59 months ago

The IT jobs I was referring to are in clinical informatics, not assistive tech. I'm not entirely sure what you would be doing, but something related to building software for OTs to use in documentation. Here is the job description:

"Participates in and contributes to the management and processing of data, information and knowledge of clinical informatics. Assists with analysis and design of processes related to development, implementation and optimization of electronic data systems. Serves as a professional clinical liaison to all areas impacted by clinical documentation and data management." To qualify, you need a degree in RN, RT, PT, SLP, or OT.

The job in evidence-based practice has been filled apparently, so I can't find a job description. I don't think you would be doing research, just reading research and relaying information to practicing therapists.

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

Have never heard of such a position. Forgive me for misinterpretation. Sure sounds different than any OT-oriented job. Why renew a license to get a desk job like this? It does remind me of a research driven endeavor. If you ever figure this one out it would be interesting to hear of the outcome.

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Suzie Que in Hawaii

59 months ago

A quick search for "clinical informatics" in the job search portion of Indeed should lead to a lot of job openings (in my state anyways...not Hawaii). Most require an RN, but at the hospital I work at, one can have a degree in OT, PT, RT, SLP, or RN. I think that since my hospital will accept other professions to this position, it might be worth a shot to apply as an OT for a position in clinical informatics in other hospitals as well if it sounds like something you would enjoy, even if they say they are looking for an RN. You never know...

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OTurbo in staten island, New York

59 months ago

Unsure in New York in New York, New York said: Thank you all for your helpful and proactive comments. I really appreciate that my comment was understood, accepted, and responded to.

SuzieQue: Can you tell me more about evidenced-based practice assurance and IT-OT jobs? These are options I have not heard of and am very interested as I have always enjoyed research. Do you have a job description or any more information about opportunity in this area?

OTurbo: 8min tx for acute care also seems like another possible option (faster pace, but maybe more meaningful treatment time). Have you worked in this setting? What did you think?

If anyone has any other ideas or can share about setting that have less demands on the amount of tx time you spend with a client, I would greatly like to hear about it.

Not sure what you meant by 8 min tx? I must have stated in the past you need to bill at least 8min for a billing but it must accompany another code for a total of a minimum of 15 min to be a visit. 8 minute minimum to bill but 15 minute minimum to bill for a visit. This is in a SNF.

In acute care, many therapists take about 15-20 min to see a pt. bedside and that time also includes documentation!

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

SusieQ, appears you are in HI? I used to work in Kona, but not in medical, therefore I'm familiar to some extent. I may have an opportunity to work in Hilo for awhile. Any reason to stay away due to situations I may not be informed of? Any words of wisdom?

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Suzie Que in Hawaii

59 months ago

Nope, not in Hawaii. Actually, I don't know how that location got attached to my name. Sorry.

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inthemix in Bremerton, Washington

59 months ago

hahaha, I was confused a bit too but I thought I'd ask anyway. Have a great day!

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OTinTexas in Fort Worth, Texas

57 months ago

Wow, after scrolling down the list of locations of these comments it appears that either Texas must be doing something drastically different or everything is just that much better here. I've never in my life heard half of these complaints while in Texas and am beginning to think that maybe OT in Texas is the place to be. I love what I do and, yes - it can be stressful at times, but OT life in Texas is great! If you don't like practicing in California or the east coast (where the majority of these negative comments are coming from apparently), come on over to Texas...they love us here. OR, you can just keep sitting at a computer and complain about how you hate your OT job somewhere else.

p.s.- if you don't believe me, out of all the comments on this "forum" how many disgruntled practicing OTs in Texas do you see?

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mellow in Fort Worth, Texas

57 months ago

I think i would love beiing an OT please tell me some of the downfalls as well as the perks.

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mellow in Fort Worth, Texas

57 months ago

I think i would love beiing an OT please tell me some of the downfalls as well as the perks.

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mellow in Fort Worth, Texas

57 months ago

I think i would love beiing an OT please tell me some of the downfalls as well as the perks.

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School OT in Cedar Grove, New Jersey

57 months ago

I am sorry for those who have not found their spot in the profession, or do not want to continue in it. I had jobs where I hated in the profession due to the facility or the supervisor. However, my current place of work, in a school system, is the most rewarding thing I have ever done. The sense of accomplishment when you help a student write his name, or use a spoon for the first time is amazing! As a career goes, you have to be generous and a little selfless. But you can give a great deal to a great many people.

I used to feel that I should have continued onto medical school, but I am glad I am where I am.

I would not trade it for anything.

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