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Jane Melton, MSc DipCOT (UK)
Adult Mental Health, England

Fundamental to my work with people who are experiencing mental ill health is the use of occupation as therapy. The Model of Human Occupation (MOHO) helps me to consider and articulate what I can deliver as specialist occupational therapy intervention with clients in relation to their ability to perform occupations within their environment. Thinking about clients needs using this dynamic theoretical framework gives strength to my clinical reasoning. It assists me to formulate hypotheses about how to enable each individual to engage in their occupations thus promoting their mental health and facilitating recovery.

An added bonus is the wide-ranging utensils provided by MOHO from which to gain standard assessment of client's needs. Having developed confidence and skill to practice using the MOHO theory and its assessment tools, it is possible to have measures of a persons' occupational development as well as theoretically underpinned narratives of their progress. I find this really helpful when discussing achievements and goals with clients; requesting funding to support a persons ongoing occupational need; sharing outcomes within a multidisciplinary context and offering clinical supervision to occupational therapy colleagues.

Applying the MOHO doesn't make Occupational Therapy easier to practice -- but, in my experience, it can make occupational therapists more accurate in their understanding of the complexities of a person's occupational need and in turn make the experience of occupational therapy more relevant and rewarding for our clients.