Occupational therapy practitioners and physical therapists have an important role to play in the health and wellness of their patients.
As such, it is essential that they stay up-to-date on the latest advances in occupational and physical therapy techniques.
Fortunately, there are many options available for therapists to increase their knowledge and further their professional development through specialized continuing education (CE) courses.
CAPS Courses provide an easy and convenient way for occupational and physical therapists to obtain the necessary CE credits for state licensure renewal, as well as to stay abreast of the latest advances in their field.
This article will examine some of the benefits of taking CAPS Courses, as well as what types of courses are available.
CAPS education courses offer a wide range of topics, from basic skills to complex specialty areas. The entire course can be taken virtually.
An online exam with a passing score is required at the end of each course. The courses cover both pediatrics and adults, as well as a variety of medical conditions and special populations.
Additionally, CAPS Courses are organized into convenient modules that can be completed at the individual’s own pace.
All courses are designed to meet the specific needs of the healthcare professional and taken online or in a traditional classroom setting.
The content of CAPS Courses is reviewed and approved by leading experts in the field, ensuring that learners have access to evidence-based information and up-to-date knowledge.
The courses also provide valuable networking opportunities for medical professionals, allowing them to connect with other healthcare professionals who share similar interests and goals.
The CAPS program aims to help individuals become a successful entrepreneur. However, if you have no prior knowledge or years of experience in running a business, taking a business management course is a good idea.
At the completion of each course, participants receive certification from CAPS Courses demonstrating their proficiency in the particular topic.
This can be used by healthcare professionals as proof of continuing education credits or to recertify credentials.
CAPS Courses are designed to give healthcare professionals the most comprehensive and engaging learning experience, enabling them to provide better care for their patients.
How To Become A Certified Aging In Place Specialist?
In order to become a Certified Aging In Place Specialist (CAPS), you must complete 3 courses through the CAPS program.
The first course, Marketing and Communicating with the Aging In Place Client, is designed to provide an overview of aging in place concepts and services.
This course focuses on building a foundation of knowledge related to aging in place, including topics such as home mods, home safety assessments, home health care services, and government assistance.
The second course, Design Concepts for Livable Homes is designed to provide an in-depth understanding of design principles that support and enhance the safety, comfort, accessibility and independence of older adults.
This course covers topics such as universal home design, ADA compliance requirements, building codes, and aging-in-place strategies.
The final course required for certification is Details and Solutions for Livable Homes and Aging In Place.
This course focuses on practical solutions to the challenges of living with age-related physical, cognitive, and social changes.
It covers topics such as home modifications that allow aging adults and the baby boom generation to remain in their homes more safely and comfortably, health care services that provide assistance in managing chronic conditions, and government assistance programs for home modifications and other resources.
In addition, it covers building code requirements, renovation and remodeling considerations, ergonomics and safety, design trends for aging-in-place living environment, and home automation technologies.
The course also provides an overview of the various legal compliance requirements needed to ensure universal accessibility in housing.
This includes details on local building codes as well as other regulations related to home modification services.
Additionally, this course examines the economic and social aspects of aging-in-place housing, such as financing options, federal subsidies, and insurance coverage for accessible building products.
This course is an ideal resource for professionals working in aging-in-place design and planning to gain an understanding of the technical requirements needed to create livable homes.
This includes details on space planning, doorways and hallways, stairways and ramps, kitchen design, bathrooms and bedrooms, lighting, furniture selection and placement, plus other elements of home modification for aging-in-place living.
Furthermore, this course provides information about the Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS) designation program, and how it can benefit design professionals who work with aging-in-place clients.
It explains the importance of certification and continuing education in staying current with changing technologies.
Will I receive CE Credits As An OT Or PT For Individual CAPS Courses?
Yes – All CAPS courses offer continuing education (CE) credits for occupational and physical therapists.
Check with the course provider to see which specific courses offer CE credits and what type of credit they offer.
Also, AOTA has reciprocity with the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), which means that courses offered through the NAHB are automatically granted CE credits.
Do I need CE Credits To Maintain The CAPS Certification?
Yes – Maintaining CAPS Certification requires “designees must earn four (4) hours of industry-related education each year at time of renewal” and pay the necessary annual fee.NAHB
The CE credits must be related to the areas of housing and home modification and can include courses taken through the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), NAHB, or other approved providers.
You will need to submit proof of completed CEs for review each year in order to maintain your certification.
The NAHB is currently working on establishing reciprocity with the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) for 2023.
AOTA offers a variety of CE courses designed specifically for those with the CAPS Certification, and they are provided through the AOTA Learning Center.
These courses cover topics such as construction basics, material selection, accessibility issues, aging in place principles, and home modification best practices.
Additionally, AOTA also has several webinars available on topics like risk management and safety.
NAHB also offers several CE courses related to the CAPS Certification, including ones on residential construction basics, and universal design principles.
They also offer webinars on topics such as remodeling for accessibility and the aging in place market.
Can I Start My Own Consulting Business With A CAPS Designation?
Yes! With a CAPS designation, you can start your own consulting business to provide accessibility solutions for people who want to age in place safely and comfortably.
As a consultant, you will use your knowledge of construction basics, material selection, accessibility issues, aging in place principles, and home modification best practices to develop customized plans that meet the needs of your clients.
You will also need to stay up-to-date on new products and technology that can help improve accessibility in the home.
The National Aging in Place Council (NAIPC) offers certification courses for CAPS designation holders, which provide a comprehensive overview of the aging in place market, design fundamentals, construction basics, and safety considerations.
Becoming certified as a CAPS professional will give you the knowledge and skills necessary to provide safe and effective home modifications that promote aging in place.
In addition to your CAPS designation, you may choose to pursue other certifications through education programs such as Universal Design Certified Professional (UDCP), Certified Accessible Designer (CAD), or Certified Senior Advisor (CSA) and the Executive Certificate In Home Modifications (ECHM) through The Leonard Davis School of Gerontology.
These certifications provide additional credentials to help demonstrate your expertise in home modifications for seniors.
When starting a consulting business, it is important to have a solid understanding of both the technical and legal aspects of the profession.
You will need to understand laws concerning zoning, health and safety regulations, building codes, accessibility requirements, business regulations, and more.
You should also be familiar with the products and materials available for home modifications.
Having a CAPS designation will give you an edge when it comes to marketing your services and gaining clients.
There are a variety of resources available to help you get started in your own consulting business with a CAPS designation.
The National Association of Home Builders offers several courses and certifications that can help you build your knowledge base and gain experience in the field.
How Much Can I Earn AS A CAPS Professional?
The amount you can earn as a CAPS professional will vary depending on the specific services you offer and your geographic location.
Some individuals may earn a full-time income while others may find part-time work more suitable for their situation.
On average, however, those with a CAPS designation typically earn anywhere from $150 per hour to $250 or more per hour.
Location, demand, and expertise will determine how much a professional can charge for their services.
However, considering the exponential growth of the Baby Boomer population in the coming years,
There is going to be greater and greater demand for all services pertaining to helping older adults age in place and other ancillary services.
How Does The Aging Population Affect The US?
The aging population in the United States has a wide-reaching impact. It will affect a variety of aspects from health care to taxation and workforce dynamics.
With an ever increasing need for elder care services, jobs within this field are expected to grow exponentially.
This means more professionals providing medical and nonmedical services such as nursing homes, home health aides, and home care attendants.
The aging population also affects public finances, as an increasing number of people rely on government programs such as Social Security and Medicare.
As the baby boomers enter their retirement age, the strain on these programs will become more acute, meaning taxes for citizens will likely increase to pay for them.
Furthermore, the aging population will demand more resources from governments to meet their needs, such as healthcare and transportation.
This could lead to increased spending in these areas, meaning fewer funds available for other important projects like infrastructure or education.
Lastly, the aging population can have an impact on consumer habits. As older people require different products or services than younger generations, businesses may need to adjust their product lines or marketing strategies to reflect this shift.
This could lead to slower economic growth, as the older population is typically not as active in the labor force and consumer spending.
How Quickly Is The US Population Aging?
The US population is aging quickly. According to the US Census Bureau, adults 65 and older currently make up 15.2% of the total US population, a number that is expected to increase significantly by 2060 when it’s projected to reach 23.5%.
The population of persons over the age of 65 is expected to double by 2030.
This rapid rate of aging will have far reaching implications for the country, from contributing to the aging of the labor force and public health concerns to a rise in demand for senior housing.
The implications of an aging population could be both economic and cultural.
What Percentage of Housing Stock In The US Is Considered Accessible?
According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, only 3% of housing stock in America is currently considered accessible.
This low rate of accessibility creates a great demand for senior housing that meets the needs of older adults with disabilities or mobility impairments.
Furthermore, as the population ages, this demand will only increase.
In order to meet the growing need for accessible housing, both public and private sectors must come together in an effort to create a better built environment.
This includes making sure that existing buildings are retrofitted or updated with features such as wider doorways, grab bars, and access ramps.
It also means creating new construction models that can accommodate individuals with disabilities while still allowing for functional and aesthetic design.
Health Care professionals such as OT’s and PT’s have a valuable and unique skill set regarding the aging process, the environment, occupation analysis and how the 3 interact.
This must be taken into consideration in order to make recommendations that will serve that specific individual for the moment and in the future, in order to age in place successfully.
Are you A Therapist Looking For A Career Change?
If you are, consider getting your CAPS designation. As an occupational therapist and a physical therapist you already have many of the skills necessary to succeed in the growing field of home modifications as a certified aging-in-place specialist.
Occupational therapists are especially trained for home safety assessment and environmental modifications to help individuals function at their highest potential in their own homes.
The home environment is such an important part of helping senior citizens maintain quality of life in their golden years.
The large population of potential clients is sure to attract other professionals such as interior designers into the field. They also have a valuable role in the home modification arena.