Occupational Therapist - Early Intervention Specialist
Location: New Orleans, Louisiana
Type: Full Time
Required Education: 4 Year Degree
Job Summary: The Occupational Therapist, Early Intervention Specialist (OTEI) is an integral member of the Lighthouse OT team, who provides leadership and expertise to the EI program. The OTEI is a primary Early Steps service provider who works as part of a collaborative transdisciplinary team that enhances the capacity of families to care for the health and development of their infants and toddlers ages 0 to 3. The OTEI recommends environmental and activity modifications within daily routines and natural settings to enhance participation and accomplish IFSP outcomes for children and their families. In addition, the OTEI collaborates with the EI team to prepare children ages 3 to 5 in the Light Steps program to ensure they have the foundational skills necessary for success in school. This position requires excellent communication skills, team-building skills, and a passion to develop comprehensive impactful programs that ensure quality services and optimal outcomes for all youth served in Lighthouse programs.
provide client-centered, occupation-based services and supports to children who are blind and/or Deaf ages 0 to 3 and their families as an Early Steps provider by developing and implementing intervention plans that foster family bonding and emotional regulation, leveraging the strengths of the family unit to build capacity for success, promoting participation in family life by adapting daily activities, encouraging families to be advocates, and supporting the transition process.
Work directly with blind and/or Deaf infants/toddlers and provide continuous education to their key caregivers to ensure implementation of therapeutic activities within their daily lives. Assist them to identify learning opportunities throughout the day that fit with daily routines by addressing ADLs, rest and sleep, play, education, and social development.
Collaborate with the transdisciplinary EI team, families, child care providers, and educators who implement IFSP and intervention plans.
collaborate with other disciplines during the evaluation and throughout the intervention processes, including co-treating or working with the family, while maintaining ongoing communication.
Enhance smooth transitions for families and children out of the Early Steps program by collaborating with service providers, promoting intra-agency coordination, and communicating across settings and systems.
Educate parents of Deaf children to promote effective communication and connection to resources for learning ASL and understanding Deaf culture.
Monitor progress and maintain daily documentation to track outcomes and support funding requirements.
Work collaboratively with Lighthouse team members across service departments to ensure quality service and optimal outcomes for all youth served in Lighthouse programs for participants ages 0 to 21.
Work collaboratively with the Occupational Therapy team to support all Lighthouse OT programs and to continuously develop expertise as a vision rehabilitation practitioner.
Support other VRS programs as needed to optimize client care.
Participate in education and advocacy events to promote inclusion for youth and/or adults with vision and/or hearing loss. Provide sensitivity training to community partners and in-services to internal staff on topics relevant to Vision Rehabilitation and Deaf culture. Conduct annual lectures to students in various fields of medicine to promote vision rehabilitation.
Stay informed of advances in medicine to support children with vision and/or hearing loss to guarantee the provision of optimal services, to support program development, and to promote the growth of youth services.
Foster a team environment with effective communication and a coordinated approach to providing rehabilitation services.
Education: Degree in occupational therapy with license to practice in Louisiana required. Additional Certification in pediatrics or vision rehabilitation preferred.
Special Knowledge/Skills: Skilled with the assessment and treatment of pediatric patients required. Knowledge of early intervention strategies to optimize developmental progress for infants and toddlers with vision and/or hearing loss required. Knowledge of the Early Steps program and other Medicaid programs for youth with disabilities preferred. Proficiency in the use of Office software products and the internet required.
Experience: At least three years of clinical practice with at least 2 years experience working with pediatric patients. Experience working in an early intervention program strongly preferred. Experience with patients who have vision or hearing loss preferred.
Supervisory Responsibilities: PRN COTA.
Physical: High energy and stamina. Able to stoop, reach, lift, crawl, and bend to engage in play activities with infants and toddlers on the floor and on play equipment, throughout indoor and outdoor settings. Able to assist youth during sports activities and physically active outings. Able to lift at least 40 lbs. Must be able to tolerate driving in all conditions to support travel between patient homes, daycare centers, and other relevant environments. Able to travel throughout the facility to safely and effectively manage all work responsibilities, breaks, and emergency evacuations, with or without a reasonable accommodation. Able to manage all self-care needs and activities of daily living as required to support successful employment, with or without a reasonable accommodation.
Personality Traits: Professional who maintains appearance and attitude appropriate to the position. Superior verbal and written communicator who demonstrates integrity and confidentiality. Creative and proactive problem solver who is comfortable working on new initiatives. Team player who is responsive to directions and suggestions. Leader who assumes
At Lighthouse Louisiana our mission is to empower people with disabilities through services, employment, and advocacy. We help people get jobs, regain their independence, and challenge expectations of the capabilities of people with disabilities. Even as a century-old nonprofit, we're constantly evolving to better serve our community.