OBJECTIVE. This study determined occupational therapists’ perceptions of the following facets of intervention planning: economics, ethics, independent professional judgment, and evidence-based practice.
METHOD. A cross-sectional survey of 142 occupational therapists who provide short-term rehabilitation in five northeastern states was undertaken.
RESULTS. Most occupational therapists (n = 137, 96.5%) fell into one of four clusters, with the largest cluster (n = 86, 60.6%) having positive perceptions about ethics and independent professional judgment but negative perceptions about economic issues. Smaller clusters of occupational therapists were more positive about economic issues or less positive about ethics and independent professional judgment. Negative perceptions about the ability to implement evidence-based practice spanned all clusters.
CONCLUSION. American Occupational Therapy Association's efforts to educate occupational therapists about ethics appear to be effective. Most occupational therapists exercise independent professional judgment but perceive economic limitations when developing intervention plans. Practicing occupational therapists need additional research to support evidence-based practice and help in accessing and using research.