Assessment Process and Information
Initial Intake Process:
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will call you back or call us at 021 975 6609 to complete an initial phone consultation. A form consisting of demographic information, as well as exploring the reason for your call will be completed with you. This helps with the decision in matching a therapist to your needs who will then contact you to complete the telephonic interview.
After completion of the telephonic interview, a date and time will be scheduled for the initial consultation between the specific therapist and the parents. The relevant forms and questionnaires will be emailed to you. Please complete the “Client Information Questionnaire” as well as the “Sensory Motor History Questionnaire” and email it back prior to the consultation. This will help the therapist to prepare for a time-effective consultation.
What is an Occupational Therapy Assessment?
An assessment aims to establish the underlying cause of the difficulties that your child is experiencing as well as what their strengths are. The assessment may vary according to the needs of your child. Some of the following areas may be assessed:
- Social emotional development
- Posture, postural mechanisms and postural control
- Sensory processing (discrimination and modulation of senses, praxis and bilateral integration)
- Sensory-motor functioning
- Development of play
- Gross motor skills
- Body and spatial awareness
- Fine motor skills and handwriting
- Visual perceptual skills
- Visual motor integration and drawing
- Attention, motivation and behavior as signs of potential underlying problems
- Sequence, timing and rhythm
How the Occupational Therapist assesses these areas
- By discussing your concerns, observations and your child’s development with you, as we realize and honour that you know your child best.
- By observing your child at work (school) and play
- By using clinical knowledge to observe in age appropriate activities
- By performing standardized tests
- By discussing relevant issues with other professionals involved with your child (teacher, psychologist, other therapists or doctors) with your permission
- By asking you and your child’s teacher to fill in specific questionnaires.
How the Occupational Therapist assesses these areas
It is important to note that the parents and the teacher are a part of the assessment. Thus, forms will be given to the teacher to complete. This is needed to obtain a clearer picture of the child’s functioning at school and at home. We ask that parents bring any recent assessments completed by their school, neuro-psychologists, developmental pediatricians, speech therapist, physiotherapist, developmental optometrists etc. to the assessment interview. In the case where the child tends to be anxious in new environments the parent is welcome to sit in on the evaluation.
- The parents are phoned by the specific therapist, and an appointment for an initial consultation for the assessment is made.
- The initial consultation is 30 minutes where parents discuss their concerns and relevant information is gathered. The developmental history and sensory motor history questionnaires are discussed as well as what areas will possibly be assessed. This is done without the child.
- During the initial consultation we may decide to alter the assessment arrangements to do diagnostic therapy or refer to another professional if it is believed to be in the best interest of you child. This is especially relevant for the younger child.
- On the day of the assessment your child is usually seen for 2 to 3 hours. Please ensure that your child goes to bed early on the previous night and wears comfortable clothes (track suit, shorts, t-shirt).
- After the assessment, an appointment is made with both parents to discuss the findings of the assessment. This feedback session may last from ½ hour to 1 hour.
- A report on the findings and recommendations will be written after the feedback or first therapy session which will be provided to the parents, and with permission to the family doctor, teacher and other relevant professionals. Please fill in the details of who you want the report to go to on the “Client Information” form. The report writing process could take two to three weeks and your patience will be appreciated.
- If at this stage no therapy is indicated or it is not required by the parents, the child’s case is closed.
We are a contracted out practice. This means that you are responsible to settle the account with us and thereafter claim from your medical aid. A statement will be emailed to you every month. A discounted rate is applicable on fees that are paid before the 15th of the following month. We have an open door policy, so feel free to discuss any issues with us. A list of our tariffs will be sent to you with your initial phone call. ICD10 (diagnostic) codes have to be used; a diagnosis is often difficult with children so please feel free to discuss this with us if you require an explanation.
Therapy sessions often occur weekly but can be increased or decreased according to the child or family needs. Occupational therapy is not an overnight answer and it requires a lot of support from the parents and other team members to ensure its success. Home programs are generally provided after the sessions to give the parents ideas of games or activities to further develop the area of focus. Occupational therapy sessions are designed to be fun for the child to enable the child to develop an internal motivation to try new things or begin to challenge themselves.
The practice times are from 7am to 5pm from Mondays to Fridays. The session times varies from 30 minute sessions to 1hour sessions, usually once a week. The practice is open during school term and holidays. Therapists take their leave during the holiday period so at times therapy may need to be done by another therapist. Please consult with your therapist.