Exploring Perceptions of Person Centred Practice in Nursing and Physiotherapy Online Communities: A Qualitative Study
Background and Purpose: Person-centred care ideals are being adopted into NHS practices/clinical guidelines across multiple healthcare professions. Originating in nursing/medical fields, there is need for standardised definitions of person-centred practice to be applied to professions individually. Physiotherapy, as noted in literature, has little theory in relation to the matter compared with other healthcare professions. The purpose of this study was to explore Physiotherapists perspectives of person centred practice in comparison to those of nurses. Methods: This study was a secondary thematic analysis of existing data by way of a phenomenological approach. The primary research was an international twitter chat exploring perceptions of person centred care among nursing and physiotherapy online communities, with recruitment of participants taking place online among existing social media communities WeNurses and Physiotalk. Results: 233 unique tweets from 61 nurses and physiotherapists were identified relating to the specific research aim. Five themes emerged from the data: 1) ‘What matters to the person’; 2) ‘Practitioner-led practice’; 3) ‘Who holds the power – Patient vs Practitioner’; 4) ‘Collaboration’ and 5) ‘Barriers and Facilitators to Person centred practice’. Physiotherapists engaged the most generating the greatest number of tweets. Conclusions: The present study identifies a need for change within physiotherapy to incorporate a person-centred approach more easily into practice, with a greater focus on looking at a person biopsychosocially, and not biomechanically. An emphasis on ‘education to empower the patient’, shifting the power of healthcare decision making from the clinician to the patient is paramount to person centred practice within physiotherapy.