Preparation for Working in Long Term Care Homes: Recommendations on Therapeutic Recreation Curricula from Recreation Therapists and Staff in Ontario
Keywords:competencies on gerontological topics, long-term care homes, older adults, recreation staff, undergraduate TR curricula
As our population ages, more seniors will require care in long term care (LTC) homes, including care from recreation therapists and staff. This study examined recreation therapists and staff’s retrospective views of what would make them better prepared for working in LTC homes. A questionnaire distributed to 290 LTC homes in Ontario was completed by 487 recreation therapists and staff. Data were analyzed using ANOVAS and frequencies. Participants ranked experience as the most important and education as the least important factor for preparing them to work in LTC. Participants indicated increased practicum experience and knowledge of charting and documentation would help prepare them to work in LTC. The results of our study suggest the need for further training in gerontological competences for TR students, such as incorporating interprofessional collaboration and experience into TR curricula. TR practitioners can also enhance their learning by collaborating with others through communities of practice.
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