Putting evidence into practice isn't as simple as handing out a couple journal articles at an in-service training, according to Susan Perry, PT, DPT, NCS. It takes time, follow-up, and a few "clinical champions" who are in it for the long haul.
Perry shared her perspective on knowledge translation with PTNow Associate Editor Mary Blackinton, PT, EdD, GCS, in the first-ever edition of "All Evidence Considered," a new podcast series from PTNow. Perry recently co-authored the article "Supporting clinical practice behavior change among neurologic physical therapists: a case study in knowledge translation," published in the April 2014 issue of the Journal of Neurologic Physical Therapy (Neurology Section log-in or journal subscription required for full-text access). The podcast can be accessed through a link in the latest PTNow blog post.
In the podcast, Perry says that although the profession has generally gotten better at accessing evidence-based resources and understanding how to read journal articles, "that's been the end of it—knowing the evidence. I don't believe that we as a profession have progressed to understanding how to use the evidence, even though that's what evidence-based practice is."
Perry talks about her experiences in implementing non-supported gait training for patients with brain injuries and stroke, and the strategies used to ensure that the evidence was not just shared and tried a few times, but integrated into PT practice at her facility. She says that in order for true knowledge translation to take place, clinician behavior must be tracked over time, with at least quarterly meetings to share progress and barriers with the entire group.
Equally important, Perry stresses in the podcast, is the presence of one or more "change agents" who can adopt the new idea and lead others to follow through. "You need a clinical champion," she says. "You need someone to make it their business to try this approach."
What's your opinion on how to apply evidence to practice? Listen to "All Evidence Considered," then join the conversation about Perry's podcast by commenting at the PTNow blog site.
American Physical Therapy Association | 1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-1488 703/684-APTA (2782) | 800/999-2782 | 703/683-6748 (TDD) | 703/684-7343 (fax)
Contact Us | For Advertisers & Exhibitors | For Media | Follow APTA
All contents © 2014 American Physical Therapy Association. All Rights Reserved.