Recreation Therapy Service
. . . Changing Lives through Recreation Therapy and Creative Arts Therapies
The Recreation Therapy Service is responsible for national policies related to Recreation Therapy and the Creative Arts Therapies (art, dance, drama, and music). The Service collaborates and cooperates with other services within the VHA and community partner organizations. These efforts promote and ensure an exceptional level of care and high quality services for all Veterans as reflected in the I-CARE Core Values. The service coordinates programs and services for VHA Recreation Therapists and Creative Arts Therapists to enhance and improve their knowledge, skill, and ability. Through these efforts, the Service reaffirms the mission.
The Mission of the Recreation Therapy Service, a direct-care interdisciplinary service, is to improve and enrich bio-psycho-social functioning through active therapy and/or meaningful therapeutic activities to maintain or improve functional independence and life quality. The intended outcome of the state of art evidence-based clinical interventions is independence in life activities based upon patient/residents needs and goals.
To provide therapy based patient-centered service that integrates function, quality, and meaning to one’s life.
The service embraces a philosophy of health promotion and disease prevention facilitated by qualified clinicians to enhance physical, cognitive, emotional, social, and leisure development that support each Veteran’s self-directed, self-determined, and fully independent participation in their chosen life pursuits.
Recreation Therapy/Creative Arts services are provided throughout the VHA healthcare system. Services are provided for individuals and groups in acute, residential, outpatient, home based, and telehealth settings.
Recreation therapy is individualized to each person, their past, present and future interests and lifestyle. The recreation therapist has a unique perspective regarding the social, cognitive, physical, and leisure needs of the Veteran. Recreation therapists weave the concept of healthy living into treatment to improve functioning, and enhance independence and successful involvement in all aspects of life.
Creative Arts Therapy is the use of arts – visual arts, dance, music, drama, and other media – materials, methods, modalities, and techniques through the creative process for therapeutic purposes. (Learn more…)
Current research indicates a significant number of positive health outcomes resulting from participation in recreation therapy and creative arts therapy programs. As a health care provider, evidence based outcomes are critical to the viability of these therapies and the specific health outcomes that are a result of these interventions.
Recreation therapists are standard treatment team members in rehabilitation services.
In addition, recreation therapists are designated as treatment team members (based upon need) in the acute brain injury, the post-acute brain injury, and the inpatient rehabilitation standards of the commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities.
The centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services includes recreation therapy in the mix of treatment and rehabilitation services used to determine federal compliance in skilled nursing, rehabilitation (physical and psychiatric), and long term care facilities.
Recreation Therapy serves Veterans across the continuum of care including Tele-Rehabilitation.
Recreation Therapy serves as an integral member of interdisciplinary patient treatment teams.
The Centers for Medicare and