Allied health professionals' experiences and views towards improving musculoskeletal services in the UK for patients with musculoskeletal and co-existing mental health conditions: a qualitative study.

Journal article


Tehrany, R., Maki, D., Teixeira, M.J.C., Chumak, T. and Hoerz, C. (2024). Allied health professionals' experiences and views towards improving musculoskeletal services in the UK for patients with musculoskeletal and co-existing mental health conditions: a qualitative study. BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders. 25 (1), p. 207. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12891-023-06878-w
AuthorsTehrany, R., Maki, D., Teixeira, M.J.C., Chumak, T. and Hoerz, C.
AbstractInterplay between physical and mental health (MH) is widely recognised amongst patients with Musculoskeletal and co-existing MH conditions. Evidence suggests that psychological interventions improve outcomes and satisfaction in patients with physical conditions, however current healthcare models continue to separate physical and mental health care, as health services are fragmented. If the delivery of MH support could be facilitated by Allied Health Professionals (AHPs), such as physiotherapists and occupational therapists (OTs), this could be an effective, low-cost way to achieve routine integration. This study aimed to explore the experiences of UK physiotherapists and OTs working with patients with MSK and co-existing MH conditions and to understand views on improving MSK services. This was an exploratory-descriptive qualitative study using semi-structured interviews. Participants were recruited via social media and professional organisations using convenience sampling. Participants included registered UK physiotherapists or OTs within MSK settings who managed patients with MH conditions. Inductive thematic analysis was used, where single and double-level coding, single counting and inclusion of divergent cases were conducted to enhance methodological rigour. Three overarching themes were identified. Overarching theme one referred to openness to provide MH support, with scope of practice and lack of confidence as themes. Overarching theme two described challenges, incorporating mental health stigma, the clinical environment, and limited experience. The overarching theme referring to training, identified the need for further training and strategies to implement as themes. Many challenges to achieving optimal integration of physical and mental health care exist within MSK services. These challenges go beyond the need for additional training and knowledge acquisition and include departmental readiness such as funding, diary management, and supervision by senior colleagues/or psychologists. These need consideration in parallel to match the evolving needs of the MSK population. [Abstract copyright: © 2023. The Author(s).]
KeywordsPhysiotherapist; United Kingdom - epidemiology; Qualitative Research; Allied Health Professionals; Depression; Mental Disorders - epidemiology - therapy - psychology; Occupational therapist; Training; Allied Health Personnel; Musculoskeletal; Mental Health; Perception; Anxiety; Humans
Year2024
JournalBMC Musculoskeletal Disorders
Journal citation25 (1), p. 207
PublisherBMC
ISSN1471-2474
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1186/s12891-023-06878-w
Publication dates
Online07 Mar 2024
Publication process dates
Accepted12 Sep 2023
Deposited26 Mar 2024
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Restricted
Publisher's version
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File Access Level
Open
Publisher's version
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File Access Level
Open
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