Date of Award

1996

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Physical Therapy (M.S.)

Department

Physical Therapy

First Advisor

Frank Ward

Second Advisor

B. Baker

Third Advisor

T. Lesnick

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to assess commonly referring Michigan physicians' knowledge of physical therapy, and its impact on favorability toward, and utilization of, its services. Three hundred questionnaires were sent to physicians of orthopedics, neurology, pediatrics, physical medicine & rehabilitation, and general practice. The usable return rate was 22 percent. Technical, professional, and overall knowledge scores, as well as utilization patterns were compared across medical specialty, practice location, and years of experience. The mean overall knowledge score was 63% with orthopedic physicians scoring the highest at 77 percent. Physicians demonstrated higher knowledge of "professional" PT procedures over "technical" procedures, however preferred "technical" ones when prescribing treatment. Overall, there was a preference for open referrals compared to prescriptive or consultative. The physicians' opinions toward PT ranged from favorable to highly favorable.

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