Priority 9 from the Occupational Therapy PSP

UNCERTAINTY: How can occupational therapists work most effectively with other professionals to improve outcomes for people who access services? (e.g. multi-disciplinary teams, commissioners, community agencies)  (JLA PSP Priority 9)
Overall ranking 9
JLA question ID 0100/9
Explanatory note

Occupational therapists work with a wide range of other professionals, statutory and non-statutory service providers and commissioners of services with the aim of providing improved services to and outcomes for the people who access their services.   

This question aims to explore the most effective ways for occupational therapists to engage and work with these people and groups, for the benefit of the people who access their services.


The evidence addressing this question is limited, comprising largely of discursive pieces and small scale studies. This is an area of uncertainty.
Aguilar, A., et al. (2014). "Exploring how Australian occupational therapists and physiotherapists understand each other's professional values: implications for interprofessional education and practice." Journal of Interprofessional Care 28(1): 15-22.
Brewer, M. L. and L. Rosenwax (2016). "Can interprofessional practice solve the vexing question of 'What is occupational therapy'?" Australian Occupational Therapy Journal 63(4): 221-222.
Brian, H., et al. (2015). "Occupational therapists as change agents in multidisciplinary teams." British Journal of Occupational Therapy 78(9): 547-555.
Dahl-Popolizio, S., et al. (2017). "Interprofessional Primary Care: The Value of Occupational Therapy." Open Journal of Occupational Therapy (OJOT) 5(3): 1-10.
Fagan, B., et al. (2017). "Interdisciplinary Communication in Postacute Care: The Perspective of Rehabilitation Providers." American Journal of Occupational Therapy 71: 121-121.
Gibbs, D. (2018). "New RCOT guideline highlights the potential contribution of occupational therapy to the neonatal multidisciplinary team." Infant 14(1): 6-7.
Godfrey, M., et al. (2019). "Pre‐discharge home visits: A qualitative exploration of the experience of occupational therapists and multidisciplinary stakeholders." Australian Occupational Therapy Journal 66(3): 249-257.
Harris, M. B., et al. (2019). "Addition of Occupational Therapy to an Interdisciplinary Concussion Clinic Improves Identi?cation of Functional Impairments." Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation 34(6): 425-432.
McMorrow, S. L., et al. (2017). "Capacity Building to Improve Interprofessional Collaboration through a Faculty Learning Community." Open Journal of Occupational Therapy (OJOT) 5(3): 1-11.
Moyers, P. A., et al. (2014). "Interprofessional Evidence-Based Clinical Scholar Program: Learning to Work Together." American Journal of Occupational Therapy 68(S2): S23-31.
Moyers, P. A. and C. A. Metzler (2014). "Interprofessional Collaborative Practice in Care Coordination." American Journal of Occupational Therapy 68(5): 500-505.
Newberry, K. and C. Terrington (2017). "Engaging the hard to engage: What contribution could occupational therapy make to an interdisciplinary approach?" International Journal of Therapy & Rehabilitation 24(8): 361-364.
Polo, K. M. and S. M. Cahill (2017). "Interprofessional Collaboration to Support Children with Diabetes." Open Journal of Occupational Therapy (OJOT) 5(3): 1-9.
Wagenfeld, A., et al. (2017). "Exploring the Value of Interprofessional Collaboration between Occupational Therapy and Design: A Pilot Survey Study." Open Journal of Occupational Therapy (OJOT) 5(3): 1-12.
Wagner, J. B., et al. (2018). "Three professions come together for an interdisciplinary approach to 3D printing: occupational therapy, biomedical engineering, and medical librarianship." Journal of the Medical Library Association 106: 370-376.
West, M., et al. (2016). "A qualitative exploration of the characteristics and practices of interdisciplinary collaboration." South African Journal of Occupational Therapy 46(3): 27-34.

Health Research Classification System category Generic Health Relevance
Extra information provided by this PSP
Original uncertainty examples How does the inclusion of occupational therapists in a multi-disciplinary team impact on outcomes for people using services?  ~ How does occupational therapy shape multidisciplinary working?  ~ How do we measure the impact of the occupational therapy input in an MDT environment, particularly in an acute healthcare setting? ~ What do OT's in generic mental health posts bring to their team ~ How can OTs in social care work more effectively with other agencies, not just health, to improve outcomes for people who use their services?
Submitted by Occupational therapists, Carers, Service Users, Other
PSP information
PSP unique ID 0100
PSP name Occupational Therapy
Total number of uncertainties identified by this PSP. 66  (To see a full list of all uncertainties identified, please see the detailed spreadsheet held on the JLA website)
Date of priority setting workshop 27 July 2020