CAOT Practice Networks

CAOT practice networks are created when a core group of CAOT Members and Associates with similar interests are identified and there is a need to create a forum. The primary goal of the networks is to build capacity related to the area. The practice networks may also (1) provide vision, resources and action for the work of CAOT; (2) provide opportunities for networking and mentoring, (3) and lobby for occupational therapy services.

OPEN HOUSE: Sexuality and Occupational Therapy Practice Network

Wednesday, July 24th, 2019

12:00 - 1:00 PM

Register here

Sexuality is a part of human nature, regardless of a person's physical, cognitive, or emotional state. However, health care professionals rarely explore the topic of sexuality with their clients. Many health care providers haven't been trained in how to discuss topics such as sex, reproductive health, safety, fertility, and many more aspects of sexuality following a diagnosis. Therefore, many clients are at risk of losing an essential part of their lives, simply because of a lack of resources. As occupational therapists, we should have the knowledge and resources to support our clients' needs with respect to their sexuality. A CAOT occupational therapy Practice Network would provide its members with up to date resources, a platform to share experiences and knowledge, and the opportunity to build their capacities to help their clients live a meaningful, fulfilling life.

Occupational Therapy and Aboriginal Health Network

Occupational therapists can partner with Inuit, Metis and First Nations peoples to influence the health, well-being and self-determination efforts of First Nations, Métis and Inuit people. Occupational therapists recognize that Aboriginal people have specific health and life challenges. Occupational therapists can engage in ongoing partnerships, education and research to provide accessible, meaningful and culturally safe occupational therapy services with Aboriginal peoples.

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Occupational Justice for Newcomers Network

This network launched in 2017, following the arrival of over 40,000 Syrian refugees who were welcomed to Canada in 2016/2017. This increase in refugees brought greater public attention to the wellbeing of the newcomer population in Canada and has further highlighted the need for meaningful occupational opportunities for newcomers. The existing research on this topic demonstrates the strong contributions OT can make toward the successful re-settlement and integration of refugees, as well as the need for greater OT involvement with newcomers living with disabilities. The launch of this network was motivated by the desire to build OT capacity in Canada to address these opportunities and needs.

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Occupational Therapists Working in Dementia Care

Engagement in meaningful occupations, be they leisure, social, self-care, volunteer, productive, and/or physical in nature, is important to the health and well-being of all Canadians. CAOT recognizes that there is a need to support opportunities for occupational engagement for older adults,regardless of health or disability status. Having an understanding of the dynamic relationship between the person, occupation, and environment can uniquely position occupational therapists to provide client centered, evidence-based services for the growing cohort of older adults.

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Poverty and Occupational Therapy Network

A network of CAOT members who are interested in exploring and understanding poverty and the effects and implications for occupational therapy practice.

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Suicide and OT Practice Network

This Practice Network formed in 2016 and meets every two months with the purpose of promoting, developing, and supporting the role of occupational therapy and occupational therapists in the area of suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention by providing opportunities for leadership, networking, and building capacity.

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Occupational Therapy and Low Vision Rehabilitation

The OTLVRN began in 2016 when Tanya contacted CAOT to begin a conversation about the need to promote occupational therapy in low vision rehabilitation. CAOT was quick to respond and a Water Cooler Talk Low Vision Rehabilitation: Practice Possibilities for Occupational Therapists, was held. An impromptu email correspondence began between three occupational therapists interested in continuing the conversation. In less than two weeks, the group had expanded with occupational therapists from across Canada speaking up. CAOT agreed to create a network to further support the development of occupational therapy involvement in the area of low vision rehabilitation.

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Occupational Therapists and Sensory Processing

Individuals with sensory processing challenges and their families should have access to evidence-informed collaborative health services. Occupational therapists are uniquely positioned to provide a developmental and holistic perspective on how sensory processing and motor planning challenges interfere with an individual’s occupational performance. The OTSP Network promotes, develops, and supports the role of occupational therapy and occupational therapists in the provision of evidence informed interprofessional assessment and intervention for those with sensory processing and motor planning challenges across the lifespan.

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Retired Member Network

The CAOT Retired Member Network started in 2016 in response to CAOT members, who are retired or considering retirement, who expressed a desire to remain in touch with the profession and CAOT. The Purpose and Objectives were determined in collaboration with those who either attended one of the first two meetings or expressed interest in the Network.

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Palliative and End-of-Life Care Practice Network

Occupational therapy can bring valuable perspectives and contributions to palliative and end-of-life care for any person.  Equally, palliative approaches can be useful even beyond imminent end-of-life situations.  The End-of-Life and Palliative Care Practice Network is here to actively engage Canadian occupational therapists toward greater awareness of palliative and end-of-life care and how it relates to professional practice and to bring the valuable contribution of occupational therapy to the attention of those developing, supporting and delivering palliative and end-of-life care.

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Creating a new network

If you would like to create a new CAOT Occupational Therapy Network or to re-establish an inactive network:
  • Ensure your idea for a new CAOT Occupational Therapy Network is intended to meet the primary goal of building capacity.
  • Complete this electronic form to describe the need for a new network and to indicate if you are willing to be a chair.
  • If desired, share the link to the electronic form with other occupational therapists across Canada who will be interested in participating in this network.

For more information about the Occupational Therapy Networks, please contact us at

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