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Interprofessional Perceptions between Therapeutic Recreation and Occupational Therapy Practitioners: Barriers to Effective Interdisciplinary Team Functioning

Ralph W. Smith, Tara L. Perry, Robert J. Neumayer, Jacqueline S. Potter, Tonya M. Smeal


The purpose of this exploratory study was to examine the interprofessional perceptions between Therapeutic Recreation (TR) and Occupational Therapy (OT) practitioners. Survey research methods were used to compare interprofessionaI perceptions that might serve as barriers to effective interdisciplinary team functioning (i.e., interprofessional and practice issues). A total of 75 TR and 80 OT practitioners returned usable surveys. Results revealed significant differences in interprofessional perceptions between TRs and OTs which may undermine interdisciplinary cooperation between these two disciplines. When viewing each other, TR and OT practitioners had different perceptions regarding trusting professional judgment, status, and training.. When viewing TRs, perception differences were found for understanding capabilities ofOTs, encroachment, seeking advice from OTs, and utilizing capabilities. When viewing OTs, differences included understanding capabilities of TRs, ethical behavior, autonomy, encroachment, utilizing capabilities ofTRs, cooperation, and good relations with TR.


Interdisciplinary Team; Therapeutic Recreation; Occupational Therapy; Interprofessional Perceptions; Interprofessional Relations

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