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Evidence based physiotherapy: physiotherapists' attitudes and experiences in the Wessex area

Evidence based physiotherapy: physiotherapists' attitudes and experiences in the Wessex area
Evidence based physiotherapy: physiotherapists' attitudes and experiences in the Wessex area
This study sought to explore physiotherapists' views and experiences of evidence-based practice (EBP). Focus groups and interviews were held with 56 physiotherapists of all grades, working in a variety of different NHS settings in the eastern part of the South and West Region. The aims were to identify physiotherapists' understanding of EBP and their views as to its appropriateness in physiotherapy and what factors they felt promoted or discouraged its development. Focus groups and interviews were tape-recorded and transcribed before thematic analysis. The findings were discussed at a consensus conference. Various recommendations emerged.
The study found that physiotherapists' definitions of EBP varied depending on their understanding of the term ‘evidence'. Views ranged from evidence being only those facts emerging from robust research to personal or anecdotal evidence from clinical practice – with most people seeing it as a mix. Junior physiotherapists and others working within university hospital settings felt they had the skills necessary to appraise research findings prior to implementation in practice. Others, particularly senior physiotherapists working in community settings, felt they did not. Community physiotherapists also felt a lack of engagement with EBP activities such as journal clubs and development of clinical guidelines due to poor access to library facilities and difficulties in meeting with peers.
All participants felt EBP to be important to the continuing development of the profession. In order to facilitate this it is important to develop a culture that promotes critical appraisal and a willingness to look further than personal experience. Physiotherapy managers and the professional body have a role to play in the development of these skills through the provision of resources and training. However, individual physiotherapists have a responsibility to provide the best treatment for their patients through reflective consideration of all available evidence.
evidence based practice, physiotherapy, attitudes
0031-9406
115 - 124
Barnard, Sue
62709559-d06f-4127-a5ab-8f2534095102
Wiles, Rose
5bdc597b-716c-4f60-9f45-631ecca25571
Barnard, Sue
62709559-d06f-4127-a5ab-8f2534095102
Wiles, Rose
5bdc597b-716c-4f60-9f45-631ecca25571

Barnard, Sue and Wiles, Rose (2001) Evidence based physiotherapy: physiotherapists' attitudes and experiences in the Wessex area. Physiotherapy, 87 (3), 115 - 124. (doi:10.1016/S0031-9406(05)61078-4).

Record type: Article

Abstract

This study sought to explore physiotherapists' views and experiences of evidence-based practice (EBP). Focus groups and interviews were held with 56 physiotherapists of all grades, working in a variety of different NHS settings in the eastern part of the South and West Region. The aims were to identify physiotherapists' understanding of EBP and their views as to its appropriateness in physiotherapy and what factors they felt promoted or discouraged its development. Focus groups and interviews were tape-recorded and transcribed before thematic analysis. The findings were discussed at a consensus conference. Various recommendations emerged.
The study found that physiotherapists' definitions of EBP varied depending on their understanding of the term ‘evidence'. Views ranged from evidence being only those facts emerging from robust research to personal or anecdotal evidence from clinical practice – with most people seeing it as a mix. Junior physiotherapists and others working within university hospital settings felt they had the skills necessary to appraise research findings prior to implementation in practice. Others, particularly senior physiotherapists working in community settings, felt they did not. Community physiotherapists also felt a lack of engagement with EBP activities such as journal clubs and development of clinical guidelines due to poor access to library facilities and difficulties in meeting with peers.
All participants felt EBP to be important to the continuing development of the profession. In order to facilitate this it is important to develop a culture that promotes critical appraisal and a willingness to look further than personal experience. Physiotherapy managers and the professional body have a role to play in the development of these skills through the provision of resources and training. However, individual physiotherapists have a responsibility to provide the best treatment for their patients through reflective consideration of all available evidence.

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More information

Published date: 2001
Keywords: evidence based practice, physiotherapy, attitudes

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 17803
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/17803
ISSN: 0031-9406
PURE UUID: af36c8ae-7cb6-4bfb-9def-190fd73dd735

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Date deposited: 15 Nov 2005
Last modified: 07 Jan 2022 22:00

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Contributors

Author: Sue Barnard
Author: Rose Wiles

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