Therapist jobs that improve everyone’s long-term outlook Occupational Therapy

Help those who defend America and who protect the health and well-being of those less fortunate around the world maintain their independence. Few jobs are as physically demanding as those in the Navy and Marines. Without proper guidance, care and treatment from Occupational Therapists, some may risk further injury, debilitation and dependence on others.

In the world of Navy Occupational Therapy, you’ll aid in restoring lost skills of daily living. Assist those who have suffered injury, illness or impairment to achieve high independent function. Play a pivotal role in the rehab and retraining of our nation’s wounded servicemembers. And even research new devices to provide cutting-edge therapy or assist in functionality.

While you’re helping patients with their long-term outlook, your outlook will advance as well. Receive assistance repaying educational loans, along with other generous benefits, a manageable workload and guaranteed vacations.

Unrivaled experience will advance your career too. Use some of the best medical technology available, in some of the most dynamic working environments across the globe. Attain skills you can take anywhere, with specialty training and continuing postgraduate education that allow you to maintain a competitive edge. Then choose from the best occupational therapy jobs when you return to civilian life.

Job Description

As a Navy Occupational Therapist, you will assist Sailors and their families and those in need in meeting everyday demands after illness, injury, or any other kind of impairment. You will provide specialized assistance in learning skills that enables them to lead autonomous, productive and satisfying lives.

Plus, you’ll partner with first-rate health-care providers, including physicians and physical therapists, and use your skills as a critical part of a multidisciplinary team.

Specific Responsibilities

As an Occupational Therapist and Officer in Navy Clinical Care, you will:

  • Work, on an inpatient or outpatient basis, with those who have had a stroke, injury, disease or other impairment
  • Use tools such as a goniometer for measuring range of motion, and a dynamometer and pinch meter, for recording hand and finger grip as well as pinch strength
  • Help rehabilitate functional daily living skills, such as bathing, dressing and eating, with or without the use of adaptive devices
  • Assess patients who may require aiding devices
  • Provide custom-made garments for an ailment or condition

You could also:

  • Evaluate and treat patients referred for multiple diagnoses, who require acute rehabilitation within inpatient and outpatient settings
  • Receive extra training in modalities, such as electrical stimulation or ultrasound for pain management, and placement activities for dexterity
  • Train as an upper-extremity neuromusculoskeletal evaluator or pediatric occupational therapist, or pursue a postgraduate degree
  • Specialize in hand therapy, pediatrics or ergonomics
  • Take on a teaching position in a dual-service occupational therapy assistant program

Work Environment

As a Navy Clinical Care Provider, you may serve at any one of more than 250 Navy and medical facilities around the globe, in some of the most dynamic environments imaginable: Hawaii to Japan, Germany to Guam, and Washington, D.C., to Washington state.

You could also work at one of the highly acclaimed National Naval Medical Centers in Bethesda, Maryland; Portsmouth, Virginia; and San Diego, California. Using the new ReoGo neuro-rehabilitation unit to help rehabilitate patients’ upper extremities following a traumatic brain injury or stroke. Or you could provide occupational therapy support aboard one of two dedicated hospital ships: the USNS Comfort and USNS Mercy.

No matter where you serve, you’ll provide leadership and expertise to support your country, in support of the men and women who defend it and the world at large.

Education Opportunities

Wherever you are in your professional career, the Navy can help ease your financial burdens and advance your career with generous scholarships, financial assistance and continuing education programs.

Graduate Students

Navy Health Services Collegiate Program (HSCP) – Receive up to $67,300 while finishing your degree. This amount includes a generous monthly salary and housing allowance ranging from $3,280 to $5,610 for up to 12 months.*

Offers have many variables. To get details and find out which offer would benefit you most, request that a Navy Officer Recruiter contact you.

*Navy HSCP housing allowance based on graduate school location. Increased offer amounts available in areas with a higher cost of living.

Practicing Professionals

There's an alternative to spending years paying down the cost of your graduate education. If you're currently a practicing professional, you could potentially be eligible to receive financial assistance through the Navy Health Professions Loan Repayment Program (HPLRP). Talk to a Navy Officer Recruiter for more information.

Offers have many variables. To get information and find out which offer would benefit you most, request that a Navy Officer Recruiter contact you.


To qualify for Active Duty employment consideration as an Occupational Therapist in the Navy Medical Service Corps, you must meet these basic requirements:

  • Be a U.S. citizen currently practicing in the U.S. (contact a
    Navy Medical Recruiter for details)
  • Master’s degree in occupational therapy from an accredited college or university; credit toward rank and time in service is given, depending on the level of degree and work experience
  • Be willing to serve a minimum of three years of Active Duty
  • Be between the ages of 18 and 41
  • Be in good physical condition and pass a full medical examination

You will also be expected to meet certain specific requirements:

  • Certification of accredited course completion in occupational therapy by the Council on Medical Education of the American Medical Association, in collaboration with the American Occupational Therapy Association
  • Successful completion of the registration examination by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy and, if applicable, a state license


After the Navy

In the Navy, you’ll find unrivaled training and educational opportunities. Incomparable benefits and experience. Deeper pride and purpose. The best medical technology available. And superior career advancement opportunities that will pay off long after you return to the civilian world.

Consider Your Service Options.

There are different ways that you can commit to serve in America's Navy. Besides full-time opportunities in Active Duty, part-time Reserve positions are also available in this career area.