Category: Cross-Cutting; Technology (e.g. robotics, assistive technology, mHealth)
To identify barriers to the implementation of two robotic devices into physical therapy (PT) practice and to evaluate the effectiveness of education aimed at addressing these barriers
Prospective, non-randomized, pre-post measure study.
Setting : Free standing rehabilitation hospital.
Participants (or Animals, Specimens, Cadavers) :
Convenience sample of 44 physical therapists employed in a free standing rehabilitation hospital
An online, anonymous, self-report survey to assess the influences on adoption of these two pieces of technology into PT practice was administered to PTs at a free standing rehabilitation hospital. Participants responded on a 5 point Likert scale regarding general feelings toward technology, technology experience, social norms, perceived behavioral control, self-efficacy, facilitating factors/barriers and intention to use technology. Scores of 4 or 5 on the Likert scale represented agreement. Survey outcomes facilitated further discussion via small focus groups of PTs. Feedback from the focus groups, as well as survey results, was used to develop theory-driven educational interventions to facilitate technology use in clinical PT practice. Upon completion of the education, the survey was re-administered to determine if changes in clinical practice, attitude and beliefs related to technology had been observed
Main Outcome Measure(s) : The Advanced Technology Survey-Robotics
Overall, survey results revealed positive changes in perceived barriers to technology use. The majority of respondents before (79%) and after (100%) education believe that utilizing technology is beneficial. Pre-education survey results revealed 69% of respondents felt technology was difficult to use as compared to 31% post education. Pre-education survey results related to social norms were neutral for both co-workers and supervisors. Following education, a change in social norms perceptions occurred with the majority of respondents feeling their co-workers (69%) and supervisors (85%) thought technology should be used. No differences were noted pre and post education in the belief that adequate resources are in place to utilize technology. Self-efficacy ratings related to using technology pre-and post-education increased by 52% to 92%. Prior to education, time was the most commonly reported barrier(68%) to technology use. After education, the biggest barrier (42%) noted was a lack of appropriate patients. The majority of respondents revealed an intention to increase their technology utilization from 70% to 92%.
This study provides insight into factors influencing technology implementation into PT practice as well as the impact that a theory driven educational approach to address these barriers may have.
Donna Zielke– Physical Therapist, Program Lead Clinician for Marianjoy Center of Excellence in Locomotion, Balance and Fall Prevention, Marianjoy Rehabilitation Hospital, Naperville, Illinois
Melissa Burns– Clinical Quality Leader, Marianjoy Rehabilitation Hospital, Lisle, Illinois
Cassandra Anderson– Physical Therapist, M Health Fairview, Edina, Minnesota
Susan Brady– Director of Quality, Northwestern Medicine - Marianjoy, Wheaton, Illinois