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Physiotherapy Review
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vol. 26
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Artykuł oryginalny

Clinical specialization in Physiotherapy practice in Nigeria: perception of Nigerian physiotherapists and recommendations for adequate implementation

Petrronilla Chidiebele Ojukwu
1, 2
Ifeanyi Williams Okolo
Ezinne Ekediegwu
Rita Nkechi Ativie
Stephen Sunday Ede
Chioma Linda Onuchukwu

  1. Gerontology, University of Southampton, Lagos, Nigeria
  2. Medical Rehabilitation, University of Nigeria, Enugu, Nigeria
  3. Medical Rehabilitation, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Nigeria
  4. Physiotherapy, Enugu State University Teaching Hospital, Enugu, Nigeria
Physiotherapy Review, 2022, 26(4), 33-48
Data publikacji online: 2022/12/24
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Metryki PlumX:

Nigeria needs more physiotherapists to be able to meet Nigeria’s growing demand. However, as much as there is a need to increase the number of practicing physiotherapists in Nigeria, more important issue to be tackled is the quality of care offered by these professionals. The ripple effect of these deficiencies and misconceptions about physiotherapy specialization in Nigeria is expected to have a negative impact on professional development, clinical and academic practice, as well as patient care and satisfaction.

This study aimed to evaluate the perception of Nigerian physiotherapists on the physiotherapy specialization process and practice, as well as their recommendations for adequate implementation.

Material and methods
Using a modified Dillman Approach, a cross–sectional survey was conducted with 235 physiotherapists. The questionnaires were tailored to the specific issues addressed in the study. Data were collected and summarized using descriptive statistics such as mean, standard deviation, frequencies, and percentages.

Respondents indicated that physiotherapy specialization in Nigeria will positively impact healthcare delivery (32.2%) and the general outlook of the profession (32.3%). Respondents appeared to agree on the involvement of academic institutions (13.2%) and residency programs (11.9%) in the process of becoming a clinical specialist. They believed that increased awareness (7.2%), changes in healthcare laws and policies (5.5%), as well as the adoption of national standards of practice (5.1%), will promote the practice of physiotherapy specialization in Nigeria.

The results of the survey showed that Nigerian physiotherapists are willing to undergo clinical specialization training. However, Nigeria currently has no well-defined standards of practice for clinical specialists, as well as a generally accepted means of attaining clinical specialization. It was recommended that awareness of specialization within the profession is increased, and that the profession's regulatory and governing bodies actively participate in setting national standards of practice within the profession.

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