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We asked the RT/TR social media grouo o. Face book am open ended question: What are things about rec therapy that you don’t like.


Based on the responses to the open-ended question survey regarding things about recreational therapy that professionals dislike, several common themes emerge.


Firstly, paperwork appears to be a significant source of frustration for many. The administrative burden associated with documentation and note-taking is mentioned by multiple respondents. This issue seems to contribute to feelings of overload, especially when understaffing exacerbates the situation.


A lack of billable hours and the ensuing negative implications also comes through as a strong concern. This includes a desire for equal standing and pay to other therapy disciplines that can bill for their services, as well as the frustration of not being recognized as a “real” therapy due to these billing constraints. The sentiment that being non-billable diminishes the respect from other professionals is a recurring point.


In a related vein, the issue of low pay and the absence of upward mobility is a significant source of dissatisfaction. Professionals expressed frustration about the pay scale not being on par with other therapy disciplines, the lack of opportunities for growth and progression, and the struggle to make a livable wage. This seems to tie into the broader issue of recognition and respect for recreational therapy as a legitimate and valuable profession.


The status and perception of recreational therapy as solely focused on activities and not being taken seriously as a therapeutic discipline is a common concern. Respondents highlighted the frustration of being relegated to the role of providing diversional or activities, and the need for advocacy and a change in mindset to elevate the profession to its rightful place within the broader healthcare landscape.


The issue of licensure and the ability to bill insurance for services is also raised, with many expressing a desire for official recognition and the ability to bill for their therapeutic interventions. This is seen as a crucial step in gaining parity with other therapy disciplines and achieving the respect and standing that professionals feel they deserve.


A concerning theme that emerged from the responses is the perceived lack of understanding and respect for recreational therapy, both within the professional community and from other disciplines. This includes frustration with the way recreational therapy professionals are viewed, with some feeling that their contributions are not fully appreciated or understood.


Additionally, the challenge of working alongside uncertified colleagues who might not appreciate the skills and expertise of certified therapeutic recreation specialists is a source of frustration and dissatisfaction for many professionals. This issue seems to compound the challenges of professional recognition and respect.


Finally, respondents expressed a desire for more opportunities for growth and progression within the field of recreational therapy, with improvements in pay and a better understanding of the profession’s value among their colleagues. Some also highlighted the lack of distinction between a recreational therapist and an activity coordinator within the job, expressing a need for clearer recognition of their professional qualifications and expertise.


Overall, the responses convey a strong sense of frustration and dissatisfaction with the current state of recreational therapy, particularly in terms of recognition, respect, pay, and the ability to bill for services. There is a clear desire for the profession to be taken more seriously and for professionals to be valued and compensated accordingly for their skills and contributions to the healthcare system. The need for advocacy, improved understanding, and changes in perception within and outside the profession are also prominent themes that were echoed in several responses.