Fostering evidence-based practice in community-based rehabilitation: Strategies for implementation

Helen Buchanan, Theresa Lorenzo, Mary Law

Abstract


Occupational therapists around the world are taking up the challenge to implement an evidence-based practice approach to the development of occupational therapy services. The emphasis in applying evidence-based practice within occupational therapy has been strongly biomedical in focus. In South Africa, many occupational therapists work in communities where their work is largely community-based rehabilitation. With no examples of how evidence-based practice can be applied in such settings, therapists have struggled with how it may be used to inform their practice. This paper explores the concepts of evidence-based practice and community-based rehabilitation, and illustrates how evidence-based practice can be applied within community-based rehabilitation. Examples are provided to show how evidence-based practice can realistically be applied in community-based rehabilitation programmes with the intention of empowering therapists to begin using evidence as a basis for their practice. It further explores how evidence-based practice can be used by occupational therapists to inform decision-making related to the development of community-based rehabilitation programmes and services.

Key words: evidence-based practice, community-based rehabilitation, occupational therapy, practice-based evidence


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ISSN 0038-2337 (print), ISSN 2310-3833 (online)

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