Developing a Collaborative Understanding of Health Justice in Physiotherapy: Findings from a National Consensus Development Conference Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Introduction: Justice and health equity are necessary to ensure the health and wellness of an optimally operating society. Healthcare leaders, educators, students, and clinicians should endeavour to achieve health justice; however, there is a paucity of literature exploring health justice and similarly, a lack of accepted models or frameworks to actualize this state. There is a need to understand the tenets of health justice that can be integrated across and within the physiotherapy profession. The aims of this project were to build upon a proposed operational definition of health justice through a national consensus exercise and identify concepts related to health justice that could inform physiotherapy education and practice. Methods: A facilitated 3-hour virtual consensus development conference was held on November 25, 2022, and included three rounds of discussion and voting. A total of 34 delegates across targeted organizations consented to participate in this study. Participants represented delegates across key Canadian physiotherapy organizations, students, educational and health service administrators, and clinicians across various healthcare disciplines. Results: Facilitated discussion within conference rounds informed revisions to the originally proposed definition of health justice. Seventeen concepts met consensus to be included in a collaborative understanding of health justice. These concepts listed in alphabetical order were accessibility, affordability, availability, determinants of health, diversity, equity, inclusion, intersectionality, health, health equity, oppression, power, privilege, quality, racism, social equity, and sustainable health. A post-conference survey resulted in the inclusion of two additional concepts, bias and voice, for a total of 19 included concepts. Ten concepts requiring further exploration were identified. Conclusion: This national consensus exercise included interprofessional delegates from physiotherapy organizations, academia, and clinical practice. Conference results can inform the development of curricular content, policies, procedures, and practices by stakeholders in physiotherapy and other healthcare disciplines.


  • Dhir, Jasdeep
  • Cleaver, Shaun
  • Lurch, Stephanie
  • Miller, Patricia A
  • Smith, Meredith
  • Smith-Turchyn, Jenna
  • Udarbe Han, Mari
  • Wojkowski, Sarah