What do Rehabilitation Counselors do?

Counsel individuals to maximize the independence and employability of persons coping with personal, social, and vocational difficulties that result from birth defects, illness, disease, accidents, or the stress of daily life. Coordinate activities for residents of care and treatment facilities. Assess client needs and design and implement rehabilitation programs that may include personal and vocational counseling, training, and job placement.

  • Prepare and maintain records and case files, including documentation such as clients' personal and eligibility information, services provided, narratives of client contacts, and relevant correspondence.
  • Develop rehabilitation plans that fit clients' aptitudes, education levels, physical abilities, and career goals.
  • Monitor and record clients' progress to ensure that goals and objectives are met.
  • Confer with clients to discuss their options and goals so that rehabilitation programs and plans for accessing needed services can be developed.
  • Maintain close contact with clients during job training and placements to resolve problems and evaluate placement adequacy.
  • Confer with physicians, psychologists, occupational therapists, and other professionals to develop and implement client rehabilitation programs.
  • Arrange for physical, mental, academic, vocational, and other evaluations to obtain information for assessing clients' needs and developing rehabilitation plans.
  • Analyze information from interviews, educational and medical records, consultation with other professionals, and diagnostic evaluations to assess clients' abilities, needs, and eligibility for services.
  • Develop and maintain relationships with community referral sources, such as schools and community groups.
  • Locate barriers to client employment, such as inaccessible work sites, inflexible schedules, and transportation problems, and work with clients to develop strategies for overcoming these barriers.
  • Develop diagnostic procedures to determine clients' needs.
  • Collaborate with clients' families to implement rehabilitation plans such as behavioral, residential, social, and employment goals.
  • Participate in job development and placement programs, contacting prospective employers, placing clients in jobs, and evaluating the success of placements.
  • Arrange for on-site job coaching or assistive devices, such as specially equipped wheelchairs, to help clients adapt to work or school environments.
  • Manage budgets and direct case service allocations, authorizing expenditures and payments.
  • Collaborate with community agencies to establish facilities and programs for persons with disabilities.

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Necessary Skills

  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Active Listening
  • Service Orientation
  • Speaking
  • Monitoring
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Critical Thinking