Occupational Therapist

Department of Public Health


Occupational therapists plan and direct educational, vocational, and recreational activities to help mentally, physically, or emotionally disabled patients become self-sufficient, maintain health, and prevent disability; evaluate the capacities and skills of patients; set goals and plan therapy programs; assist patients in performing activities of all kinds, ranging from using a computer to caring for daily needs, such as dressing, cooking, and eating. For those with permanent functional disabilities, therapists provide such adaptive equipment as wheelchairs, splints, and aids for eating and dressing. They also design or make special equipment needed at home or at work. An important part of an occupational therapist\'s job is recording a patient\'s activities and progress. These records are essential for evaluating patients, billing, and reporting to physicians.

Code Citation IC, Chapter 148B; 645 IAC 206

Who Applies Persons who wish to practice occupational therapy in Iowa.

When To Apply After educational requirements are met.

Initial Requirements Graduation from an occupational therapy program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education of the American Occupational Therapy Association and six months of supervised field experience.

Duration Two years.

Processing Time 4 weeks after all required materials are on file. Online renewal in real time.

Fee Structure Initial License: https://www.legis.iowa.gov/docs/ACO/chapter/645.5.pdf Renewal: https://www.legis.iowa.gov/docs/ACO/chapter/645.5.pdf

Renewal Requirements Thirty hours of continuing education are required biennially for license renewal.

Exam New graduates who have never held an occupational therapy license may apply for a Limited Permit which is valid for a period not to exceed six months, limited permit holders may practice under the supervision of an Iowa licensed occupational therapist until he/she takes the national examination. Applicants must arrange to take and successfully pass the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT) examination.

Additional Information Persons who wish to practice occupational therapy in Iowa.

Services Provided

Service Category

  • Service SubCategory
Contact Information
Bureau of Professional Licensure
Lucas Building
321 East 12th Street
Des Moines, IA 50319