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Professional Development Resources

Ethics for Occupational Therapists

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Overview / Abstract:

Ethics for Occupational Therapists is a text-based, 3-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that teaches OTs how to address ethical and moral dilemmas in practice.

Ethical and moral issues pervade our lives and healthcare professionals are constantly confronted with a variety of ethical and moral dilemmas. Decisions can have long-range effects professionally and personally, not only for the healthcare professional, but for patients, clients, healthcare entities, and society. Why does one decision win out over another? What constitutes the decision-making process? How do decisions impact those involved?

Occupational therapists are engaged in an “ethic of care,” where activities of daily living are not just a function, but also an expression of values. Helping people maintain their maximum possible functioning is seen in relation to society and the common good of all persons (Taylor, 2015). This is an abstract ideal that must be put into practice in an imperfect world. How does the occupational therapist make decisions about what is best for the person when there are difficult choices to make?

This course will discuss the common moral and ethical dilemmas that occupational therapists face. The course is based on the 2020 Code of Ethics of the American Occupational Therapy Association and research that offers evidence-based practice strategies. Note that the field of ethics changes over time. The AOTA states that the Code of Ethics “is designed to reflect the dynamic nature of the occupational therapy profession, the evolving health care environment, and emerging technologies that can present potential ethical concerns in practice, research, education, and policy” (AOTA, 2020). This course is updated every few years, but there will always be new information that affects the ethical practice of occupational therapy, and this must be considered during the decision-making process.

Course #31-44 | 2022 | 56 pages | 20 posttest questions


Dec 31, 2032


Occupational Therapy CE





Credits / Hours




Presenters / Authors / Faculty

Bill Asenjo, PhD, CRC, has been a certified rehabilitation counselor (CRC) and vocational rehabilitation consultant since 1994. He completed his PhD in the University of Iowa's Rehabilitation Counseling program, and received an MS in health science, specializing in rehabilitation counseling, from the University of Florida. He has provided expert testimony in more than 100 hearings, trials and depositions. As a consultant to attorneys in disability-related cases, his reports have garnered glowing testimonials. An internationally published and award-winning freelance writer with fifteen years of experience, his work appears in numerous print and online publications, ranging from medical encyclopedias and health magazines, to trade publications for attorneys and anthologies like Chicken Soup for the Soul. On the way to his PhD, he received a writing award for his dissertation.


Financial: No relevant financial relationships exist.
Nonfinancial: No relevant nonfinancial relationships exist.

Linda Bagby, OTR, received her degree in Occupational Therapy from Eastern Kentucky University. She has more than 20 years of clinical experience in a variety of healthcare settings, including home health, long-term care and five years of work hardening. Her area of specialization is the geriatric population. During her employment in various nursing homes and rehabilitation treatment centers, she has been faced with a number of ethical situations and challenges. Her ability to successfully cope with and overcome these challenges, make her uniquely qualified to write on this topic. Linda lives in Punta Gorda, Florida with her husband and two beautiful teenage daughters.


Financial: No relevant financial relationships exist.
Nonfinancial: No relevant nonfinancial relationships exist.

Keywords / Search Terms

Professional Development Resources ethics for occupational therapists, ethics for OTs, CE, CEU, Ethics CEU, ethics continuing education, online course

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