The Hospital Units in Occupational Therapy Acute Care

Acute Care Hospital Units

Common hospital units for occupational therapists to work in with examples of conditions.  Occupational therapists may float to some or all of the units. Ideally, the OT would stay in one unit or on the same floor to minimize the walking and back and forth. This is not a complete list.

Emergency Room

  • Trauma
  • Medical emergencies
  • Multiple medical conditions
  • Psychiatric emergencies
  • COVID-19


  • Trauma
  • Medical emergencies
  • Multiple medical conditions

Step Down

  • Trauma
  • Medical emergencies
  • Multiple medical conditions

Medical Surgical

  • Deconditioning
  • ALOC
  • Falls
  • Diabetes
  • CHF
  • COPD
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Infections
  • Substance abuse
  • Psychosocial conditions


  • A-fib
  • CHF
  • Pacemakers


  • Aneurysms
  • TBI
  • Dementia
  • Seizures


  • Elective surgeries
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Falls
  • Violence
  • Accidents
  • Work injuries
  • Amputations
  • Chronic conditions


  • Cancers


  • Medical conditions that meet ARU criteria
  • Neuro conditions
  • Ortho
  • Cardiopulmonary
  • COVID-19


  • Rule-out
  • COVID-19 positive
Jeff is a licensed occupational therapist and lead content creator for OT Dude. He covers all things occupational therapy as well as other topics including healthcare, wellness, mental health, technology, science, sociology, and philosophy. Buy me a Coffee on Venmo.