New Website; Additional COVID-19 Guidance Private Practice OTs; Open Forum Summary – April 28, 2020

New Website

The ACOT website is nearing the end of its lifespan and we are preparing to launch a refreshed site soon. During the switch from our old to our new website, we are replacing our weekly posts of COVID-19 updates with an eNews twice a month, which will go straight to your email on file with ACOT.

Additional Guidance on Determining Urgency of Services for OTs in Private Practice

Since the April 9 eNews, we have been asked by OTs in private practice and those whose employer/contracting organization is not involved in the delivery of essential services, to provide examples of what services they can proceed with (e.g. services that are truly urgent and critical for client care/safety).

Although each OT is best-suited to determine the urgency of need of their client group, examples of non-essential OT services that would be considered urgent during the pandemic could include:

An assessment/intervention determined by you, or requested by an insurance company/lawyer/organization you are contracted by, that will:

  • support a client’s discharge from hospital
  • hasten the return to work of a client that is employed in any of the essential services
  • prevent an emergency department visit or hospital admission
  • prevent a client from harming themselves or others

If you deem that OT service provision is urgent, use remote means to deliver services whenever possible. For services that require in-person delivery: conduct pre-visit screening and point-of-care risk assessments, follow Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) practices including the use of appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Alberta Health Services (AHS) has evidence-informed IPC/PPE guidance available for reference from their COVID-19 Information for AHS Staff & Health Professionals page.

Open Forum Summary – April 25, 2020

Council was pleased to have 31 OTs registered for its Open Forum that took place on April 25th. We learned a lot from the items brought forward, which were a great contribution to the work of Council. ACOT will be following up with its stakeholders on the items brought forward including:

  • Liaising with Alberta Health regarding when private practice OTs will be able to resume providing all services;
  • Connecting with the University of Alberta regarding timelines for graduation and whether distance learning will be continuing;
  • Discussing with our partners promoting coverage of OT as an essential service by third party insurers;
  • Exploring where grant funding opportunities for OT might be advertised.

Thank you to all those who participated!