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Physical Therapists' Perspectives on Importance of the Early Intervention Competencies to Physical Therapy Practice

Weaver, Priscilla, PhD, DPT, PCS; Cothran, Donetta, PhD; Dickinson, Stephanie, MS; Frey, Georgia, PhD

doi: 10.1097/IYC.0000000000000127
Original Research/Study

The purpose of this study was to examine perspectives of physical therapists on the level of importance of the early intervention competencies to practice in early intervention and differences in perspectives based on demographic factors. A web-based survey was disseminated to physical therapists who worked in early intervention or with children birth to 3 years of age by nonprobability sampling techniques. Of 288 surveys, 80.4% of responses on the importance level of the early intervention competencies were within “extremely important (5.0)” or “very important (4.0)” categories, with a mean score of 4.18. Thirteen competencies received greater than 60% of responses within the “extremely important” category, with no significant differences among therapists based on demographic factors. Physical therapists rated all early intervention competencies on the positive side of the importance scale, with certain competencies rated as more important than others. Competencies with highest ratings should be emphasized at all levels of physical therapy professional development.

Departments of Kinesiology (Drs Weaver, Cothran, and Frey) and Epidemiology and Biostatistics (Ms Dickinson), Indiana University, Bloomington. Dr Weaver is now with St. Ambrose University, Davenport, Iowa.

Correspondence: Priscilla Weaver, PhD, DPT, PCS, Doctor of Physical Therapy program, St. Ambrose University, Davenport, IA 52803 (WeaverPriscillaA@sau.edu).

This research was supported, in part, by a small grant from Bradley University, Center for Research and Service.

There are no conflicts of interest by any author.

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