Programs that evaluate an individual's capacity for self-care and his or her ability to function independently in the context of everyday living and which, where necessary, may recommend rehabilitative services (e.g., independent living skills instruction), supportive services (e.g., attendant care, personal care or home health care), or an alternative residential setting (e.g., an assisted living centre or nursing facility). Activities of daily living include bathing, eating, dressing, mobility, transferring from bed to chair and using the toilet. Most assessments also include instrumental activities of daily living such as using the telephone, taking medication, money management, housework, meal preparation, laundry and grocery shopping. Evaluation services are generally provided for individuals who have physical and/or mental limitations or for people whose age may constitute a temporary (children) or developing (elderly) limitation.
Programs that pay for or provide equipment that has been especially designed or adapted to assist people who have physical disabilities to bathe, shave, dress, brush their teeth, comb their hair, prepare their meals, eat, drink, clean their homes and perform other daily tasks.
Programs that evaluate muscle strength and endurance, functional mobility, neuromuscular coordination, flexibility, joint range of motion, cardiovascular fitness and reaction time and oversee, under the direction of a physician, a program of therapeutic exercise and education designed to improve the quality of life, health, fitness and independence of medically-stable individuals in wellness, sub-acute, extended care or home settings.
Programs that evaluate the task performance skills of individuals who may be having difficulty engaging in self-care, work, play or leisure time activities and help people across the lifespan participate in the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities (occupations). Occupational therapy services typically include an individualized evaluation, during which the individual/family and occupational therapist agree on the person's goals; customized intervention to improve the person's ability to perform daily activities and reach their goals; and an outcomes evaluation to ensure that the goals are being met. Common occupational therapy interventions include helping children with disabilities to participate fully in school and social situations, helping people recovering from injury to regain skills, and providing supports for older adults experiencing physical and cognitive changes.
Programs that evaluate joint motion, muscle strength and endurance, heart and lung function and the ability of people to perform activities of daily living; and utilize the therapeutic properties of exercise, heat, cold, electricity, ultraviolet, water, manipulation and massage to improve circulation, strengthen muscles, reduce pain and restore mobility to people who have been disabled by a stroke, arthritis, back or spinal cord injuries or other debilitating conditions. Physical therapists practice in a variety of settings including hospitals, private offices, outpatient clinics, rehabilitation centres, developmental centres, home health agencies, schools and pediatric centres.
Rehabilitation oriented fitness programs that develop individualized exercise routines and other fitness activities for people with acute or chronic health conditions such as arthritis, congestive heart failure, diabetes, Parkinson's disease, physical disabilities or other problems which affect their physical functioning with the objective of mitigating the effects of their condition; improving muscle strength and endurance, flexibility, and cardiovascular health; losing weight, if desirable; and reducing the risk of health problems such as heart disease, high blood pressure, osteoporosis and depression. Included are gym and home based therapeutic exercise programs and aquatic therapy.
The above terms and definitions are part of the Taxonomy of Human Services, used here by permission of INFO LINE of Los Angeles.