Tuesday, August 9, 2022
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Rehabilitation : Job Prospects & Career Options

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If you want to build a rewarding career in the healthcare industry and you are a person interested in serving the society this is the right choice for you. Employment for Rehabilitation specialist and physical therapist is expected to increase faster than average, as there is a growth in the number of individuals with disabilities requiring professional intervention. People in this field work in a wide variety of settings including hospitals and clinics, rehabilitation centres, mental health centers, community service programs, public health departments, state & central vocational rehabilitation departments, colleges & universities, special schools and residential care houses, which are equipped with the necessary tools to help patients adjust to living independently with their disabilities.

Some Rehabilitation Therapists/workers may choose NGOs working for rehabilitation of children, elderly people and disabled. They also have the option to open their own rehabilitation clinics. Those who obtain a doctorate in rehabilitation counseling or related field may teach or conduct research at the college or university level. Often rehabilitation professionals work along with other social service professionals, medical specialists and therapists.

The duties of a rehabilitation worker/professional vary depending upon the people with whom they work and the setting in which the work takes place. Regardless of the population or setting, rehabilitation professionals help people deal with the personal, social, physical and vocational impact of their disabilities. Most rehabilitation workers work with special groups which include blinds, the mentally ill, physically disabled, hearing impaired, mentally retarded, autistic children, elderly people, prisoners etc. The clients of a rehabilitation worker can be of any age, gender, ethnicity or religion. Again, some specialize within a larger group. For example, a rehabilitation worker may work exclusively in the area of vocational rehabilitation or occupational therapy. Rehabiliation workers serve not only the patients but also the families of the patient.

Areas of work

Special Education- Special education is a branch of rehabilitation meant to provide education to students with special needs in a way that takes into account individual differences and needs of students. Special schools, integrated schools or special classes in regular schools and special education programs in community base settings employ special educators to work with children with mental retardation or other disabilities. The main aim of special education is to make a child adjust himself in school, family and other social attachments so that they may be able to solve their day to day problems.

Special education teachers must be organized, patient, able to motivate students, understand their students special needs, and accept differences in others. Special education teachers help their students progress not only academically but also behaviorally by helping them develop emotional awareness, conduct themselves in a manner that is socially acceptable, and feel comfortable in social situations. Special education teachers spend much of their time working with students, parents, school faculty and administrators and others. They must have the ability to communicate effectively and be cooperative. As these teachers work with students who have learning difficulties, they must be creative and apply different types of teaching techniques to reach every student.

Clinical/Therapeutic Rehabilitation- Clinical/Therapeutic Rehabilitation is the science which is meant to provide clinical and specific therapeutic services to persons with disabilities. These therapist play a vital role in helping physically challenged individuals acquire skills that will enhance their quality of life. They serve developmentally disabled patients to help regain their physical, social and mental abilities through therapeutic activities and exercises. Therapeutic rehabilitation consists of the following group of professions: Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Rehabilitation Counseling, Art Therapy, Prosthetics and Orthotics, Recreation Therapy and Speech Pathology. The strategies of these therapists include exercise, creative arts, massage, heat, light, water, electricity and specific therapeutic apparatus.

Individuals recovering from a wide range of surgeries, injuries or illnesses, elderly persons, those recovering from accidents and many other groups of people rely upon rehabilitation therapy professionals to improve their quality of life and overall health. Rehabilitation Therapy has also been proven to provide significant benefits to patients with ongoing medical conditions such as: Joint replacements, Arthritis, Orthopedic Surgery, Strokes, Amputation, Open Wounds and Neurological conditions.

Psychosocial Rehabilitation- Psychosocial Rehabilitation professionals provide community based support and services to people diagnosed with severe mental illnesses. The goal of psychosocial rehabilitation is to teach skills and provide community support so that individuals with a mental illness can function in social, vocational, educational and familial roles. It not only include medical and psychosocial treatment but also ways to foster social interaction, promote independent living and encourage vocational performance. There are career opportunities in a variety of psychiatric and community mental health settings.

Vocational Rehabilitation- Vocational Rehabilitation is the continuous and coordinated process of rehabilitation science, which is meant for prevocational and vocational training, vocational guidance & counseling, selective placement designed to enable an adult disabled person to secure and retain suitable employment for their independent living. A vocational rehabilitation counselor develops and implement educational and supportive programs to increase the clients employability. Their support may include job training, making the person comfortable at their workplace, councelling on how to improve their performance or change habits that were not perceived favourably at the workplace. They usually work with adults and not with children. They may work with mentally and emotionally disabled or who have suffered the loss of their capacity to continue in a career field because of illness or injury. 

Rehabilitation Management and Administration- Rehabilitation Management and Administration is the field of study for planning, organizing, financing, directing, supervising, inspecting and evaluating the rehabilitation services provided by the institutions dealing with disabled persons.

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