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Breuer, J. and Piso, B. (2013): Occupational therapy in children and adolescents. Literature review on indications, utilisation and recommendations. HTA-Projektbericht 70.

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Background and research question: Maintaining a client-centred approach, Occupational Therapy (OT) aims to improve quality of life, independence and the ability to perform activities of daily living. Corresponding and detailed data for the use or indication of OT in children and adolescents are currently unavailable in Austria. For this reason, the aim of this project was to summarise information from different sources on the indications, recommendations and utilisation of OT.

Methods: As part of a web-based literature search, financial reports and performance catalogues of health insurances were analysed in order to find clues to the frequency of OT utilisation in children and adolescents. To answer questions concerning indication areas and recommendations, a systematic literature search for reviews and guidelines was performed.

Results: We included 4 German health insurance reports, 24 review articles and 20 guidelines. The identified indications vary: Cerebral diseases, developmental disorders and ADHD were mentioned most frequently. Age and areas of intervention range widely according to their respective indications. Data for utilisation of OT in children and adolescents can be found in health reports, but not in a detailed form (i.e. based on underlying specific diagnoses). The largest proportion of occupational therapy is prescribed to children and adolescents.

Conclusion and recommendation: Due to the absence of published research from the Austrian health care context, studies from other health care systems can –despite their limited transferability– provide insights into both the indication areas and utilisation of occupational therapy in children and adolescents. The identified diseases or functional limitations represent the current research focus and may or may not correspond to the most common indication areas for OT in practice. The extracted data give an indication on the affected number of children and adolescents, but not on how many children ultimately require OT interventions. In order to provide specific recommendations, further research on specific indications is essential. In addition, future prescription and claims data should be generated in a way that allows a more detailed data analysis.

Item Type:Project Report
Keywords:Occupational Therapy, children, adolescents, literature review, indications, utilisation
Subjects:WA Public health > WA 525-590 Health administration and organisation
WS Pediatrics
WB Practice of medicine > WB 460-556 Physical and occupational therapy
W Health professions > W 84 Health services. Quality of health care
Series Name:HTA-Projektbericht 70
Deposited on:13 Nov 2013 17:07
Last Modified:15 Jul 2020 17:50

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