Blood Pressure Attitudes, Practice Behaviors, and Knowledge of Outpatient Physical Therapists

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Cardiopulm Phys Ther J


Purpose: The purpose of this study is to describe and determine correlations among blood pressure (BP) attitudes, practice behaviors, and knowledge among physical therapists (PTs) practicing in the outpatient (OP) settings.

Methods: A survey was mailed to 1440 OP PTs matching inclusion criteria and through random selection from the American Physical Therapy Association Listserv. Self-reported demographics, attitudes, practice behaviors, and knowledge regarding BP measures of survey respondents were recorded. Descriptive statistics analyzed demographics and question responses; whereas a nonparametric Spearman version of the correlation coefficient analyzed correlations between variables.

Results: Three hundred thirteen surveys from males (41.3%), females (58.7%), and PTs with greater than 10 years' of experience (57.8%). Although 51.8% of respondents did not feel importance in measuring BP during evaluation, 94.2% felt confident in their ability to do so. In addition, 85.0% of respondents did not routinely measure BP during evaluations. One-third and two-third of respondents correctly identified criteria matching a prehypertensive or hypertensive BP, respectively. Furthermore, a positive correlation (r = 0.84, P < .001) was identified between attitude and practice behaviors; however, not between attitude or practice behavior and knowledge.

Conclusion: Initiatives to address misinformed BP attitudes and behaviors as well as gaps in knowledge of PTs providing care in OP settings is warranted.





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