Establishing a pediatric occupational therapy clinic in the public-sector in Trinidad

Poster Presentation

Investigating the Demand for Public Sector Occupational Therapy Services in Trinidad and Tobago

Karen Jacobs, EdD, OT, CPE, FAOTA1; Raquel Martinez, MSc1

1Boston University

Abstract: Paediatric occupational therapy in Trinidad and Tobago is conducted privately. Whereas public sector health care is free of charge, there are steep costs attached to private services, which restrict many families from accessing treatment for their children. Objective: In order to demonstrate that OT services, offered publicly would be utilized, the main stakeholders should be addressed, i.e. the caregivers of children with disabilities. Information would be combined into a project proposal to present to the Government of Trinidad and Tobago. Method: 88 surveys were distributed both publicly and privately to the families of children with disabilities to determine whether they would access occupational therapy services if they were offered at one public hospital in Trinidad. Practice implications: If implemented, this project will provide access to therapy for many families who could not previously afford it, improving their quality of life. References: Ministry of the People and Social Development, Social Investigations Division, 2013. Miske Witt & Associates, 2008. Lerslip, S., Putthinoi, S., & Kewalin, P., 2016.

Presented at 

  • Association of Caribbean Occupational Therapists 13th Biennial Scientific Conference, “Occupational Therapy in the Caribbean: 25 years of Making Waves and Building Bridges”. November 2-4, 2017, New Kingston, Jamaica.
  • World Federation of Occupational Therapists Congress, “Connected in Diversity: Positioned for Impact”. May 21-25, 2018, Cape Town, South Africa.

Peer-reviewed Publication Citation

Martinez, A. R., & Jacobs, K. (2020). Establishing a pediatric occupational therapy clinic in the public-sector in Trinidad: The quest for clinical and professional expansion. Work, 66(3), 669-674. doi: 10.3233/WOR-203209.