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Putting Occupation Into Practice, Essay Example

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The main point of Julie McLaughlin Gray’s article, “Putting Occupation into Practice: Occupation as Ends, Occupation as Means,” is that many occupational therapists, and the field in general, tend to overlook the originating principles of occupational therapy in their desire to offer short term, practical solutions to clients.  The emphasis on these performance components can result in areas such as wholeness and meaning being pushed aside or in some way minimized.  Gray concludes that one reason why occupational therapy has had difficulty in itself stems from a lack of connectivity with the principles that are meant to underlie the field and its practices.  She presents the case study of Alejandro in order to demonstrate that performance components such as cognition and emotion can work positively in tandem with elements that look at the intersection of occupation and the client’s personal desires and interests.  She states that it is crucial for occupational therapists to consider both what it means to be an occupational therapist, and how their work differs from others in health care professions.  Gray suggests that treatment planning can become more successful, both for the client and the occupational therapist, if a less exclusive approach is taken to incorporating all aspects of the occupational experience.

Works Cited

Clark, Florence. “Occupation Embedded in a Real Life: Interweaving Occupational Science  and Occupational Therapy.” The American Journal of Occupational Therapy 47.12 (Dec 1993): 1067-1078.

Jackson, Jeanne, Carlson, Mike, Mandel, Deborah, Zemke, Ruth, & Clark, Florence. “Occupation in Lifestyle Redesign: The Well Elderly Study Occupational Therapy  Program.” The American Journal of Occupational Therapy 52.5 (May 1998): 326-336.

McLaughlin Gray, Julie. “Putting Occupation into Practice:  Occupation as Ends, Occupation as Means.” The American Journal of Occupational Therapy 52.5 (May 1998): 354-364.

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