Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Telephone physiotherapy reduces waiting times and provides equally good patient results

Date:
January 29, 2013
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
A physiotherapy service based on initial telephone assessment has the ability to provide faster access to the service and cut waiting times, a new study suggests.

A physiotherapy service based on initial telephone assessment has the ability to provide faster access to the service and cut waiting times, a study published today on bmj.com suggests.

Providing access to physiotherapy has long been a problem in the NHS with waiting times of several week or months. Furthermore, waiting lists may be congested with those who will benefit from physiotherapy advice but have little to gain from a course of face-to-face appointments.

With an aging population and rising healthcare expectations, healthcare providers need to explore new ways of delivering healthcare with one such suggestion being initial assessment by telephone. However, this has not yet been rigorously evaluated.

Researchers from around the UK therefore assessed the effectiveness of PhysioDirect, where the patient can telephone a physiotherapist for initial assessment and advice without waiting for a face-to-face appointment. Services which have already implemented PhysioDirect claim it has reduced waiting times and was popular with patients. Researchers compared PhysioDirect with usual care in a randomised controlled trial.

The study involved 2,256 patients aged 18 or over with musculoskeletal problems who were studied between July and December 2009: 1,513 to PhysioDirect and 743 to usual care.

Almost half the PhysioDirect patients (711) were managed entirely by telephone. They also had fewer face-to-face appointments than those in usual care and fewer physiotherapy consultations of any type. The PhysioDirect patients also had a shorter wait for physiotherapy treatment (seven days versus 34 days) and were less likely to fail to attend appointments.

The University of Bristol-led study found that care based on PhysioDirect is equally clinically effective compared with usual care and provides faster access to advice and treatment. However, no evidence was found of improved patient satisfaction.

The authors say the fact that 47% of PhysioDirect patients were managed entirely on the telephone, and were almost as satisfied with their consultations as usual care patients, shows that physiotherapists are able to provide assessments and advice by telephone in a way that is reasonably acceptable to patients.

The researchers conclude that PhysioDirect "is equally clinically effective compared with usual care, provides faster access to physiotherapy, and seems to be safe" but there is no evidence that it is associated with increased patient satisfaction.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. C. Salisbury, A. A. Montgomery, S. Hollinghurst, C. Hopper, A. Bishop, A. Franchini, S. Kaur, J. Coast, J. Hall, S. Grove, N. E. Foster. Effectiveness of PhysioDirect telephone assessment and advice services for patients with musculoskeletal problems: pragmatic randomised controlled trial. BMJ, 2013; 346 (jan29 3): f43 DOI: 10.1136/bmj.f43

Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Telephone physiotherapy reduces waiting times and provides equally good patient results." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 January 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130129190239.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2013, January 29). Telephone physiotherapy reduces waiting times and provides equally good patient results. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130129190239.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Telephone physiotherapy reduces waiting times and provides equally good patient results." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130129190239.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, April 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

AP (Apr. 17, 2014) President Barack Obama gave a briefing Thursday announcing 8 million people have signed up under the Affordable Care Act. He blasted continued Republican efforts to repeal the law. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) A recent study links apathetic feelings to a smaller brain. Researchers say the results indicate a need for apathy screening for at-risk seniors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins