Child-Focused and Context-Focused Behaviors of Physical and Occupational Therapists during Treatment of Young Children with Cerebral Palsy
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AIMS: To (1) describe the child- and context-focused behaviors of physical and occupational therapists, and (2) compare the behaviors of therapists in a standard therapy session with those of therapists trained to deliver child- and context-focused services. METHOD: Videos of 49 therapy sessions provided by 36 therapists were analyzed using the intervention domains of the Paediatric Rehabilitation Observational measure of Fidelity (PROF) to examine the therapeutic behaviors of physical and occupational therapists with young children with cerebral palsy (CP) (24 to 48 months) in a Dutch rehabilitation setting. The PROF ratings of 18 standard therapy sessions were compared with the ratings of 16 child- and 15 context-focused therapy sessions. RESULTS: Therapists who provided standard therapy demonstrated a mix of child- and context-focused behaviors. PROF ratings indicated fewer child- and context-focused behaviors during standard therapy sessions compared with sessions where therapists were instructed to use either child- or context-focused behaviors. CONCLUSIONS: A sample of Dutch physical and occupational therapists of young children with CP demonstrated a mix of child- and context-focused therapy behaviors during standard therapy. Further research is recommended on clinical reasoning and the effect of setting to better understand therapists' use of child- and context-focused behaviors during therapy sessions.
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