A hand therapist is a registered occupational therapist or physiotherapist who specialises in the rehabilitation of patients with conditions affecting the hands and upper limb.
A hand therapist’s high level of specialization requires advanced post-graduate education and clinical experience. This enables him or her to help patients return to a productive lifestyle following injury, disease or deformity affecting the hand.
An experienced hand therapist can evaluate and identify problems affecting the upper limbs. He or she can provide advice regarding exercise, preventative care, aids to daily living and ergonomic consultation.
A hand therapist often works alongside surgeons, planning and implementing post-operative care in order to hasten patients’ recovery following surgery.
A detailed profile of the job role has been defined by the IFSHT and can be downloaded here:
IFSHT International Hand Therapy Practice Profile