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5 Occupational Therapist Interview Questions and Answers

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As an occupational therapist, how have you created rehabilitation plans to help clients regain lost skills?


Occupational therapists help injured workers in rebuilding their abilities and getting back to work. They conduct assessments to gauge the individual's progress and create plans to help the workers complete daily tasks required for their preferred jobs. The plans include rehabilitative services related to the individual's injuries and the best practices for getting them back into the workforce. What to look for in an answer:

  • Experience creating tailored-to-fit rehab plans
  • Examples of skill cultivation in previous clients
  • Overall subject knowledge and communication skills


"My rehabilitation plans started with a complete assessment of the individual's skills set. I built plans to strengthen weaknesses and enhance the individual's strengths. I compared their benchmark results with the current requirements for their preferred job."


What attributes are the most important for a licensed occupational therapist?


Occupational therapists work with patients with varying injuries and disabilities. Adapting to new challenges is vital for the therapist, and they help patients who don't progress at the same rate. They are patient and well-organized when treating patients. The therapist understands what it takes to manage care for injured workers on a daily basis. What to look for in an answer:

  • Experience working with patients with varying injuries
  • Organizational skills
  • Patient and understanding demeanor


"In the role, I worked with patients with varying conditions that required me to remain patient and keep them at ease. I developed extensive organizational skills as I managed multiple patients daily, and I remained determined to find patients the best job position for which they qualified."


What strategies did you use for workers who would never qualify for their previous job due to the result of their injuries?


Occupational therapist know that not all workers will have the ability to return to the same work they did previously. Instead of pushing the individual toward unachievable goals, the therapist provides new opportunities for the patient and helps them progress towards a different job goal. They continue to provide encouragement as patients achieve new milestones and keep them motivated. What to look for in an answer:

  • Experience persuading patients to consider new job goals
  • Examples of creating realistic goals based on the patient's current abilities
  • Good communication and interpersonal skills


"I coordinated with patients to achieve new goals when it wasn't possible to return to their previous position. I took a more compassionate approach to introducing new job objectives that matched the patient's current abilities."


How do think an occupational therapist should identify realistic goals for workers and help them set new goals?


Occupational therapists conduct assessments on a continuous basis to gauge the individual's abilities. They review the doctor's diagnosis and compare permanent conditions to new abilities that are possible for the patient. A realistic plan for the future is based on the types of jobs that the patient has the physical or mental capacity to obtain and retain. What to look for in an answer:

  • Experience conducting patient assessments
  • Experience with patients who have physical and mental disabilities
  • Dedication and care toward patient success


"I compared the doctor's diagnosis to each milestone completed by the patient after their recovery from their injuries. I reviewed job positions that matched their abilities and presented the patient with more realistic goals and helped them make choices about the future."


How did you use information systems to track the patient's progress in their rehabilitative plan?


Occupational therapist enter information about the patient during and after each visit into medical information systems. They keep patient's records updated to reflect any new changes in diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation plans. The patient's progress is recorded after each visit. The therapist uses the information to compare patient data about their condition and how it affects their abilities. What to look for in an answer:

  • Experience with medical IT systems
  • Practice keeping accurate patient records
  • Knowledge of how to compare patient data and conduct assessments after milestones are achieved


"I kept updated patient files for each of my patients and compared data after each visit to gauge their progress, evaluate the impact of their condition on their abilities and create new plans and goals for re-entering the workforce."

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