Date Approved


Graduate Degree Type


Degree Name

Physical Therapy (M.S.)

Degree Program

Physical Therapy

First Advisor

Arthur Schwarcz

Second Advisor

Joyce French

Third Advisor

Susan Allaben


The purpose of this study was to investigate the interprofessional relationship that exists between nurses (RNs) and physical therapists (PTs) as perceived by RNs in the inpatient setting. A questionnaire, the Interprofessional Perception Scale, (Ducanis & Golin 1978) was modified and sent to 230 day shift nurses who have contact with PTs at four West Michigan hospitals. Forty-five percent of the surveys were returned. RNs responded to the following questions regarding the nursing and physical therapy professions: how would you answer; how would PTs answer, and how would PTs say that you answered, for 15 interprofessional issues. Differences between how RNs responded, how RNs thought PTs would respond, and how RNs thought PTs would predict RNs would answer were analyzed by a Z-test for correlated proportions (Wild & Seber, 1993). Significant differences at the 0.05 significance level (p {dollar}\le{dollar} 0.0033) were identified for the following interprofessional issues: capabilities; professional territory; expectations; status; defensiveness; advisement; utilization; competency; trust; and cooperation. However, the overall trend revealed that nurses hold positive perceptions toward both the nursing and physical therapy professions.


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