Re-imagining occupational wellbeing: Development of an evidence-based framework
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© 2018 Occupational Therapy Australia Background/aim: Occupational therapists concern themselves with understanding engagement in everyday activity as a mode of facilitating wellbeing. However, there appears to be little consensus within the literature as to how engagement in meaningful activities contributes to wellbeing. Currently, there are no published evidence-based frameworks for wellbeing to support occupational therapy practitioners to address wellbeing with clients. The purpose of the study was to establish an evidence-based contemporary framework, domains and descriptive statements defining occupational wellbeing. Methods: A multiphase, exploratory sequential mixed methods design, using both qualitative and quantitative approaches was used. Two phases were identified for data collection. The first phase involved exploration of the domains of occupational wellbeing, through conducting a literature review and two focus groups. The Delphi technique was employed in the second phase to refine and corroborate the domains of occupational wellbeing with an expert panel. Results: Six new domains of occupational wellbeing were generated in the first phase of the study, namely: Competence, autonomy, contentment and pleasure, identity, hope and belonging. In the second phase, five out of the six domains reached a consensus level of 70% or more. Hope was the only domain not to reach consensus. Conclusion: The framework for occupational wellbeing produced by this study was created using evidence-based, replicable methodology and garnered support from a highly regarded expert key informant group of occupational therapy and occupational science academics. Further exploration to determine whether there is widespread support and applicability for these domains with normative and vulnerable population groups is required.
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