Commissioning occupational therapy

A guide for commissioning, funding and planning services

Occupational therapy improves the health and wellbeing of people through enabling participation in daily life which is made up of many occupations (or activities).

Occupations can include:

  • self-care (e.g. getting dressed, eating a meal)
  • being productive (e.g. participating in school, going to work)
  • leisure (e.g. socialising with friends, belonging to a group, participating in hobbies)

Disruption to these everyday activities is experienced by many people due to illness, disability or circumstance which in turn harms health and wellbeing. Occupational therapy makes a vital contribution to health, social care, education and other sectors to enable people to have a meaningful life.

There is no blueprint for funding, commissioning or organising occupational therapy services in terms of workforce numbers and service models, as services must respond to local needs. However these guides outline the added value that occupational therapy can bring and factors for consideration when determining quality, resourcing and organisation:

To see how the commissioning process works in England please watch the film below, developed by The Kings Fund: