Home and Community Occupational Therapy for Children and Youth: A before and after Study
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BACKGROUND: There has been an increased focus on home care service provision in recent years, yet there are few data available about the provision of home and community occupational therapy for children and youth. PURPOSE: To evaluate key elements of a service provision model for home care occupational therapy in terms of occupational performance outcomes, perception of care and cost. METHODS: Eleven centres in Ontario and Quebec recruited 167 children and youth up to 18 years of age to a before and after study of occupational therapy services in the home and community. Occupational performance, quality of life and costs were measured at baseline and study end. Perception of care was measured at study completion. RESULTS: A statistically and clinically significant improvement in occupational performance was demonstrated (p < 0.001). The clients' families gave high ratings to the process of care provided by the occupational therapists. These data did not demonstrate a clear relationship between amount of service, cost and occupational performance outcome. PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS: Children receiving home and community occupational therapy services change in their occupational performance abilities. These changes are not directly related to the amount or focus of the occupational therapy services.
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