To assess the relationship between characteristics of acute care physical therapists (PTs) and use of standardized outcome measures (OMs); also describe the perceived barriers, facilitators, and resources to the use of OMs by PTs in the acute care setting.
An electronic survey was distributed to PTs who currently work, or have worked, in the adult acute care setting in the past 5 years. Separate quantitative and qualitative analyses were performed followed by triangulation of findings.
A convenience sample included 227 respondents. Most respondents (n = 159, 70%) reported using OMs. PTs with a clinical specialty used OMs significantly more (P = .041) than those without. No significant difference was found in the frequency of OM use between years of experience, entry-level degree, and primary patient population. The top barrier was lack of time (60%). The top facilitator was support from administration (81%). Themes generated for barriers, facilitators, and resources included lack of resources, setting specificity, patient population and acuity, objective data, facility support, and continuing education.
Most acute care PTs reported using OMs, although a higher frequency was observed in those with a clinical specialty. This study presents opportunities to provide knowledge translation and resources to combat barriers to OM use in the acute care setting.