What is Occupational Therapy?
Occupational Therapy is a family-centred health profession concerned with promoting health and well-being through participation in everyday activities.
Our occupational therapy service offers support and advice for children and families to enable them to participate in everyday activities, and to help children further develop their skills. Occupational Therapists (OT’s) work with children with any condition or impairment that affects their ability to perform everyday activities, including tasks related to self-care (such as brushing their teeth or dressing), play and school (such as handwriting).
JCU Health Occupational Therapy Clinic is a student-led service, providing support to children, adolescents and their families.
The service supports the further education of Occupational Therapy students and their professional skills under the supervision of a qualified Occupational Therapist. We strive to provide a high quality occupational therapy service based upon the needs of the child and family. As we are part of James Cook University, we actively support research related to the development of evidence‐based Occupational Therapy practice and you may have the opportunity to participate in various research projects.
Who Do We See?
Children and adolescents who present with difficulties in the following areas:
- Coordination and motor skills
- Handwriting, copying, drawing, forming letters or shapes
- Concentrating or paying attention
- Constant repetitive movements
- Organising themselves and their own space
- Everyday activities (e.g., toileting, feeding, dressing)
- Making friends and socialising with peers
- Becoming upset over loud noises, bright lights, strong smells, feeling different textures, and swinging movements
Services May Include:
- Comprehensive assessment & report
- One on one intervention sessions
- Group sessions
- Consultation with schools and other service providers
- Combined Speech Pathology and Occupational Therapy Clinic
- Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy services
Your First Appointment
What Can I Expect From My Child’s First Appointment?
- Upon initially meeting each child we complete an assessment to identify their strengths and difficulties. Every assessment is different and tailored around the age and ability of the child/ young person, their participation on the day, and the needs and priorities that have been identified in the referral and initial discussions
- Following the initial assessment (first appointment) we offer an additional appointment to discuss the contents of the report and answer any questions regarding this. This second session is complimentary
- The initial assessment will focus on the child/ young person, developing rapport with them and completing assessment tasks with them. This is to obtain as much information as possible during this initial visit. There will also be time at the end of the appointment to discuss additional priorities.
- We appreciate that at times there may be information that you may not want to discuss in front of your child. If there is the case please advise us as discussions can also occur over the phone, in alternate areas or in follow-up sessions.
- When the OT is completing activities with your child/ young person, it is best if you can avoid giving them prompts, helpful hints or pointing out mistakes. Our goal is to observe what the child/ young person can do without any support. There may also be times when we seek your encouragement and participation.
What to Bring to My First Appointment?
- Please bring any additional reports you have from other health professionals, and/or information from your child’s school which you feel may be beneficial for us to see. This may include samples of written work completed at school, or for homework.
- Please bring your child’s glasses, or other items that they use regularly to assist them complete tasks at home or in the classroom.
- Please ensure your child has running shoes/ sneakers with them if possible.
How to Refer
We accept referrals from parents/guardians and health and educational professionals. The cost of our service is $50 for the initial assessment (including a feedback session & report) and $30 for subsequent appointments (fees subject to change). This is in order to cover some administration costs. If families have any concerns regarding their ability to pay this fee please contact the service to discuss further.
Referral forms are available by contacting JCUHealth on 4781 4495, or complete an online referral here.
Email or fax the completed form to JCUHealth
Occupational Therapy Clinic Staff
Occupational Therapist, Clinical Educator
Grace is an occupational therapist and the JCU Occupational Therapy Clinic Manager. Grace supervises occupational therapy students completing their third and fourth year clinical placements at the JCU Occupational Therapy Clinic. She also teaches into the undergraduate occupational therapy program at JCU. Throughout her career Grace has always worked with children and their families, she enjoys supporting children to build their independence in their daily tasks including looking after themselves, going to school, playing with friends and pursuing their interests. Grace has worked in clinical settings, community settings, rural and remote locations and educational settings in Australia and overseas. As an occupational therapist Grace supports children and their families work towards their goals using a family centred approach. Therapy will be targeted to your child’s unique interests and developmental level, and be provided in a fun and motivating environment.