Prosthetists’ perceptions and use of outcome measures in clinical practice: Long-term effects of focused continuing education

Brian J. Hafner, Susan E. Spaulding, Rana Salem, Sara J. Morgan, Ignacio Gaunaurd, Robert Gailey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Continuing education is intended to facilitate clinicians’ skills and knowledge in areas of practice, such as administration and interpretation of outcome measures. Objective: To evaluate the long-term effect of continuing education on prosthetists’ confidence in administering outcome measures and their perceptions of outcomes measurement in clinical practice. Design: Pretest–posttest survey methods. Methods: A total of 66 prosthetists were surveyed before, immediately after, and 2 years after outcomes measurement education and training. Prosthetists were grouped as routine or non-routine outcome measures users, based on experience reported prior to training. Results: On average, prosthetists were just as confident administering measures 1–2 years after continuing education as they were immediately after continuing education. In all, 20% of prosthetists, initially classified as non-routine users, were subsequently classified as routine users at follow-up. Routine and non-routine users’ opinions differed on whether outcome measures contributed to efficient patient evaluations (79.3% and 32.4%, respectively). Both routine and non-routine users reported challenges integrating outcome measures into normal clinical routines (20.7% and 45.9%, respectively). Conclusion: Continuing education had a long-term impact on prosthetists’ confidence in administering outcome measures and may influence their clinical practices. However, remaining barriers to using standardized measures need to be addressed to keep practitioners current with evolving practice expectations. Clinical relevance: Continuing education (CE) had a significant long-term impact on prosthetists’ confidence in administering outcome measures and influenced their clinical practices. In all, approximately 20% of prosthetists, who previously were non-routine outcome measure users, became routine users after CE. There remains a need to develop strategies to integrate outcome measurement into routine clinical practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)266-273
Number of pages8
JournalProsthetics and orthotics international
Volume41
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2017

Keywords

  • Allied health occupations
  • attitudes
  • education
  • follow-up studies
  • health knowledge
  • practice
  • professional education
  • prosthetics
  • qualitative methods
  • study design
  • surveys and questionnaires

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Rehabilitation

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