History of OT in Manitoba


In February 1918, the University of Toronto started a six-week course of Occupational Therapy for "suitable young ladies". Following this course, several of these graduates moved west to tend to those wounded in World War I.

This six-week course and the professionals who graduated were among the first occupational therapists in Canada and would ultimately influence the formation of what is today known as the Manitoba Society of Occupational Therapists.

Some other key moments in the history of MSOT and Occupational Therapy in Canada include:

1920: At least twenty-one occupational therapists are working in and around Winnipeg.

1922: The therapists form the Canadian Society of Occupational Therapists of Manitoba. (It should be noted that there are some discrepancies about the name of the organization and the date. Some records refer to the organization as the Manitoba Society of Occupational Therapists of Canada and the start of the organization has been, at times, noted as 1920.)

1923 – 1949: Records show there are occupational therapists now working in Brandon, Manitoba.

1950's: The three or four occupational therapists in Manitoba become members of the Canadian Physiotherapy Society - Manitoba Branch. (This group would later be instrumental in facilitating the University of Manitoba diploma course.)

1960: The School of Medical Rehabilitation at is opened at the University of Manitoba.

1961: The Manitoba Society of Occupational Therapists (MSOT) is officially formed. The ten members held their first meeting on November 21, 1961 at the Canadian Arthritis and Rheumatism Society. Membership fees were $3.00 a year. The priority for the organization for its first five years was PUBLICITY.

1964: For the first time ever, the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists (CAOT) Conference was held in Winnipeg. In November of the same year, MSOT was legally incorporated as a non-profit organization.

1966: MSOT introduces the first legislation in Canada to register (license) Occupational Therapists.

1967: The Occupational Therapists bill is introduced to the Manitoba Legislature, but passage is delayed due to a change in Government.

1971: The first Occupational Therapy legislation is passed in Canada, and at the same time, the Association of Occupational Therapists of Manitoba (A.O.T.M.) is formed.

1979: The first occupational therapy students graduate from the University of Manitoba, School of Medical Rehabilitation with their degrees in Occupational Therapy.

1983: The new Occupational Therapists Act is prepared by the Association of Occupational Therapists of Manitoba and receives assent on August 18, 1983. The Act was proclaimed December, 1985.

1989: MSOT celebrates the 25th Anniversary of its incorporation on November 13th.

1989: MSOT once again hosts the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists National Conference.

2002: The Occupational Therapists Act is revised by Association of Occupational Therapists of Manitoba and receives Royal Assent on July 25, 2002.

2003: MSOT hosts the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists National Conference for a third time.

2005: The Occupational Therapist Act is proclaimed and goes into effect. In the same year. the Association of Occupational Therapists of Manitoba became The College of Occupational Therapists of Manitoba and the University of Manitoba graduated its first class of students who earned their Master of Occupational Therapy.

Prepared by Sharon Eadie for MSOT - July 1997. Updated July 2007.
Sources include materials from MSOT Archives Committee & C.A.O.T.

 

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