Toward a physical environmental continuum for occupational intervention in a rehabilitation hospital

Camille Skubik-Peplaski, Graham D. Rowles, Elizabeth G. Hunter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


A study was conducted to explore occupational therapists' perceptions of rehabilitation environments and the influence of these perceptions on practice and occupational interventions. Traditionally, inpatient occupational therapists have a choice of intervention environments, ranging from a gym-like to a more home-like setting. Choosing to provide interventions in these different environments can have an impact on occupational performance. In this qualitative exploration, 21 occupational therapists participated in focus groups designed to explore their perceptions of practice environments. Analysis of the transcribed data revealed that therapists felt rehabilitation environments should offer choices and be flexible, that environments influenced intervention strategies, and that the practice environment had an impact on professional identity. On the basis of this data, a conceptual matrix of the intersection of environmental setting and occupation-based interventions is presented to highlight the importance of these two aspects of therapy. Future research in this understudied area is needed to transform this matrix into a clinically useful model.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-47
Number of pages15
JournalOccupational Therapy in Health Care
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2012


  • Environment
  • Occupation-based practice
  • Person-environment- occupation model
  • Rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Occupational Therapy


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