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Physiother Theory Pract. 2016 Aug;32(6):468-482. Epub 2016 Jun 3.

Minimum standards of clinical practice for physiotherapists working in critical care settings in Australia and New Zealand: A modified Delphi technique.

Author information

1
a Department of Physiotherapy , Western Health , Melbourne , Victoria , Australia.
2
b Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital , Physiotherapy , Brisbane , Queensland , Australia.
3
c AUT University , School of Rehabilitation and Occupation Studies , Auckland , New Zealand.
4
d University of Notre Dame Australia , Physiotherapy , Fremantle , Western Australia , Australia.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Achieving competency in critical care in entry-level physiotherapy courses across Australia and New Zealand is not essential, and accredited training for qualified physiotherapists working in critical care units is lacking. As a result, practice standards and training may vary. The objective was to establish consensus-based minimum clinical practice standards for physiotherapists working in critical care settings in Australia and New Zealand.

DESIGN:

A modified Delphi technique, which consisted of three rounds of questionnaires, was used to obtain consensus on items.

SETTING:

Australian and New Zealand critical care settings.

PARTICIPANTS:

A panel (n = 61) was invited from a pool of eligible physiotherapists throughout Australia and New Zealand (n = 93). Eligibility criteria were defined a-priori on the basis of possession of expertise and experience in the practice and teaching of critical care physiotherapy clinical skills.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE:

Questionnaires were disseminated electronically (either via email, or SurveyMonkey®). Items were designated by participants as being 'Essential/Unsure/Not Essential'. Consensus for inclusion was achieved when items were ranked 'Essential' by more than 70% of participants.

RESULTS:

Fifty physiotherapists consented and participated in the initial Delphi round, of whom 45 (90%) completed all rounds. Consensus was reached on 199 (89%) items. The panel agreed that 132 (58%) items were 'Essential' items for inclusion in the final framework.

CONCLUSIONS:

This is the first study to develop a consensus framework of minimum standards of practice for physiotherapists working in critical care. The clinical utility of this framework now requires assessment.

KEYWORDS:

Critical care; Delphi technique; education; physiotherapy; professional competence

PMID:
27259819
DOI:
10.3109/09593985.2016.1145311
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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