What is occupational therapy and how can Childworks assist my child?
Occupational Therapy Australia states that occupational therapy (OT) is a “client-centred health profession concerned with promoting health and well being through occupation. The primary goal of occupational therapy is to enable people to participate in the activities of everyday life. Occupational therapists achieve this outcome by working with people and communities to enhance their ability to engage in the occupations they want to, need to, or are expected to do, or by modifying the occupation or the environment to better support their occupational engagement”. In other words, occupational therapists help people to do things. When working with children the activities they need to do include, attend and engage in school, participate in sport, play, social interactions and so on.
Childworks provides comprehensive and affordable occupational therapy for children aged three and a half through to the end of high school. Parents and carers are always involved and are part of the therapeutic process.
Childworks involves the use of therapeutic activities to improve the child’s sensory, motor, cognitive, emotional, social and physical skills and abilities. For example, if a child has difficulty performing school work due to poor co-ordination, visual perception or poor ability to concentrate, Childworks may be of assistance. We also look at developmental activities such activities that improve a child’s independence. A child may have difficulty with dressing themselves. They may need cues to understand what step comes next, they may need modification of the activity such as something to help them manage zippers, they may need help to learn specific skills or they may need some other form of assistance. If your child has difficulty with activities they need to do in their everyday lives, then occupational therapy at Childworks may help.
If you would like more information about how occupational therapy might help your child please call Childworks on 02 9098 1635 or make an enquiry at help @ childworks.com.au
How is Childworks different?
Like all professionals, each practice has its own approach. Childworks focuses on a functional approach, that is, we emphasise practical aspects of your child’s life and help them to maximise their potential in those areas.
For example, if your morning routine is a problem we will analyse what is going on with that routine. We may modify the environment removing distractions for you child and adding prompts to help him or her with their independent self care. We may help your child to develop specific skills in dressing or eating, we may provide some guidance on how you as a parent can modify the routine and use behavioural tools to overcome issues.
We will identify a problem and use a number of interventions, including using your child’s own strengths to overcome those issues. Clinical research supports this approach.
Do I need a referral? How do I refer my child to Childworks?
A formal or medical referral is not required to see an occupational therapist.
If you or anyone involved in the care of your child (e.g. paediatrician, teacher, speech pathologist) is concerned about your child’s development or if your child is struggling performing daily activities (self-care, play, school tasks), contact Childworks. Please call us on 02 9098 1635 or make an enquiry to help @ childworks.com.au. We will contact you to talk about your child’s development and the concerns you have. An appointment time for an assessment will be arranged.
How much does treatment cost? How can I pay my fees? Can we claim under Medicare, Private health funds & the Government funding schemes?
Treatment costs vary depending on the length and type of treatment. There are set costs for an initial assessment which includes a report. Please contact us on 02 9098 1635 or make an enquiry at help @ childworks.com.au for current prices of treatment.
Payments are made after treatment. We accept Cash and EFTPOS payments. A receipt will be emailed to you straight after your appointment.
Private health fund – This depends on your level of cover. We recommend that you check with your health about what rebate you are entitled to. All health funds are different.
Medicare – There is one plan that some clients are able to access under medicare. Eligibility for this plan is determined by your doctor. Five sessions may be claimable through Medicare with a referral from your GP.
NDIS – Childworks is fully registered to provide NDIS services and is a trusted provider of occupational therapy services. Feel free to give us a call on 02 9098 1635 to discuss how we could help your child.
Other government funding schemes – Childworks is registed with schemes, such as FaHSCIA through the Better Start for Children with Disability, Helping Children with Autism and the Early Intervention Assistance Package.
Does my child need an assessment or can they just start therapy at Childworks?
Assessments are a key part of the therapy process. They allow the therapist to initially identify areas of need and establish a baseline with which to monitor progress. The assessment lasts for approximately 90 minutes. It will include testing using observation, parent discussion, standardised and/or non standardised testing of your child. We will ensure your child is actively engaged in the assessment process whilst having fun along the way – most of the time they don’t realise they are actually being ‘assessed’!
How long is each session? What happens during a therapy session?
After the initial assessment, we then create a comprehensive programme based on your child’s strengths and weaknesses as well as the needs of the family. We implement this programme over a series of one-on-one sessions. Treatments can very enormously! They may involve using toys, participating in daily activities, providing information to parents or caregivers or even a trip to the shops. We design an individual programme to help your child to achieve their full potential.
The length of sessions will vary depending on your child’s individual needs and goals and how often they are attending therapy. Sessions typically range from 30 minutes to 1 hour.
How long will treatment last? What results can I expect to see?
Treatment is reviewed on a regular basis. This process will continue until the child’s therapy goals are met. Sometimes children benefit from a break from therapy.
Results from occupational therapy will depend on the individual profile of your child and what you are hoping to achieve by attending Childworks. The frequency and intensity of the therapy will also determine the gains made and the outcome of the therapy. Being involved in your child’s therapy sessions and assisting the therapist with implementation at home can help lead to better outcomes.
Are sessions held in a therapy room? Will the OT attend my child’s school, daycare or home?
Typically, therapy is held at the Childworks clinic (Dural) because it is a flexible, safe, supportive environment for children of all ages. If required, we can arrange visits at your child’s school, preschool, home for assessment. Appropriate therapy can take place at these locations or via video link to ensure the child’s progress carries over to those environments.