Welcome Home: Cost Effectiveness, Outcomes and Continuity in Home Care

Appropriate occupational therapy improves patient outcomes and is more cost effective than acute care


The purpose of this project was to improve health care policy related to home care services. The Canadian Occupational Therapy Foundation (COTF) argued that home care could significantly reduce costs compared to prolonged acute care placements in hospital facilities or children’s institutions. They suggested, however, that for these cost benefits to be properly assessed, best practices for homecare and service utilization patterns had to first be assessed and integrated into standard practice. COTF undertook a study of home care services provided by occupational therapists for children, adults and seniors with functional disabilities. By 1994/1995 the National Population Health Survey showed that over half a million people in Canada received publicly funded home care.

Grant Outputs

Home and Community Occupational Therapy for Children and Youth: A before and after study – http://www.caot.ca/CJOT_pdfs/CJOT72/Law72(5)289_297.pdf

This report examines levels and methods of OT services provided and the impact on patient outcomes, cost of services, and family perceptions of care. Occupational Therapists (OT) worked with 175 children, recording data on a range of dimensions. The report concludes that children experience improvements in their quality of life as a direct result of improvements in their occupational performance status. The majority of parents in this study paid some out-of-pocket expenses and most families used a combination of publicly and privately funded services to provide additional therapies.

Grant Details

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