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Responsible for the service City of Helsinki

Occupational therapy evaluations for children aged 0–6 years old in Helsinki

  • Service
  • Helsinki
  • Public service

Information tel. 09 310 20823, for Finnish speaking customers on Wednesdays 13:00-14:00 and for Swedish speaking on Fridays 13:00-14:00.

Why is a child given a referral to an occupational therapy evaluation?

In most cases, a referral is made when a comprehensive examination of the child at the maternity and child health clinic has revealed issues with the child’s development that require a more detailed review at an appointment with an occupational therapist. It is also possible to receive a referral for an occupational therapy evaluation from a maternity and child health clinic, based on concerns that have been brought up by the child’s family or day care centre or in a psychologist’s evaluation, for example. The family’s consent is required for the referral in all cases.

Who will give the referral?

In Helsinki, a public health nurse or a doctor from the child’s maternity and child health clinic will give the referral for an occupational therapy evaluation. The occupational therapist will contact the family as the appointment approaches.

How many appointments are needed?

Depending on the child’s age, energy and the nature of the problems there will be 2 to 3 appointments in total. The evaluation appointment usually takes 1–1.5 hours. When necessary, the occupational therapist can, with the parents’ consent, call or make an observational visit to the child’s day care centre or contact other parties treating the child.

What happens during the evaluation appointments?

A child’s occupational therapy evaluation involves a review of the different areas of the child’s development. These include, for example, gross and fine motor skills, visual perception and processing of sensory data. The methods used include tests and tasks that assess skills and capabilities and, for example, observation during different situations.

It is important that the child’s parent or an adult who knows the child well is present during the first appointment, so that the occupational therapist can interview them about the child’s situation and the progress of their development. At later appointments, the child works alone with the occupational therapist, so one of the child’s other loved ones can bring them to the appointment instead, if necessary.

The occupational therapist is under the obligation of professional secrecy in all matters concerning the child. Cooperation with the day care centre, for example, requires the parents’ consent. The...

To whom and on what terms

Requires a referral.

The service is intended for residents of Helsinki.

Background information

Occupational therapy is medical rehabilitation, the purpose of which is to improve and maintain the patient's functional capacity. For example, an occupational therapist may introduce the customer to different assistive devices that make coping with everyday situations easier and propose changes in the customer’s home. Occupational therapy may be provided individually or for groups.

Basic information

The service is provided byCity of Helsinki
Responsible for the serviceCity of Helsinki
Area Helsinki
Available languagesFinnish, Swedish, English
Text edited by: City of Helsinki
Updated: 4/9/2021