Are physiotherapists necessary?

J. Gemmel, M. J. Stockham, G. C. Goats, I. Lawrie

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Abstract

    Through description of the work of physiotherapists in all areas in which they are presently involved, it has been shown that they are providing levels of expertise and an approach to health care and education unique to their profession. Their expert training in specialist techniques enables these therapists to become integrated into the multidisciplinary team or to work as independent practitioners. The highly functional nature of physiotherapists' approach to patient management is unlike that of any of their colleagues and their insight into the everyday lives of their clients and understanding of the relationship between people and their physical environment serves only to ensure that this management is both successful and economic of resources. The system of early and regular contact and high levels of contact time creates a unique bond between physiotherapists and their patients and is complementary to success in this area of paramedical intervention. The rising level of physiotherapy involvement in education and prevention programmes highlights the special skills of these practitioners who have a valuable effect of these areas, and is logical in terms of budget and patient management. Finally, by taking responsibility for ensuring that their inclusion in healthy care provision is valid and efficacious through the use of evaluation and research procedures, physiotherapists are able to prove the necessity of their skills in all the areas in which they work and that the 'insatiable demand' for their services (Dyer, 1982) is entirely justified.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)497-506
    Number of pages9
    JournalPhysiotherapy
    Volume74
    Issue number10
    Publication statusPublished - 1988

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