I read something about critical theory this morning that made me think about a couple of recent posts on the future of physiotherapy. In the piece, the author was taking critical theorists to task for attempting to ‘demystify’ the social world without proposing solutions. People, she argued, want attractive alternatives and a sense that utopia, or at least the hope of a better life, might be possible. This is a powerful argument that I don’t entirely agree with, but it did make me think about Roger Kerry’s recent blogpost ‘Physio will eat itself’, which followed my own question of whether we would disestablish physiotherapy as a profession if it were in the best interests of patients or the healthcare system as a whole (Link). Critiquing the systems and structures, objects and subject positions that make up today’s healthcare … [Read more...] about New physiotherapy – 7 ways to change the world
One of the biggest dilemmas facing the physiotherapy profession today is how to keep it alive. Given the unrelenting pressures to reform, cut costs, and redesign practice, it's hard to know whether to push the profession's stability, history and established culture, or to promote a radical new professional image. And faced with healthcare innovations that seem to be dissolving old certainties, it's hard to know whether we like it or not. Imagine, for instance, that robots were shown to be more reliable manipulators than physios, or that a low-cost assistant could do the work of post-op respiratory physiotherapy just as well as an expensively trained clinician. Would we promote it? In some instances, like this recent trial by a 'short-stay rehab unit based at a Nottingham care home' that 'managed to cut 90-day hospital … [Read more...] about Should we give up physiotherapy?
An Australian senator claimed a few days ago that one-third of all pensioners in Australia were living in poverty. If this is correct, it is a shocking statistic for a developed country like Australia, and a wake up call for professions like physiotherapy, which needs to have a voice in the discussion about the future of aged care. The Australian online journal The Conversation checked the claims made by Senator Jacqui Lambie, and agreed with her assertion, citing a 'widely reported OECD Study - Pensions at a Glance 2015' which showed that, 'According to the latest available figures, poverty rates of people aged over 65 were very high in Korea (50%), Australia (34%), and Mexico (27%). In contrast, the Netherlands and the Czech Republic have the lowest poverty rates: 2% and 3% respectively' (link). In an interview in The … [Read more...] about Physiotherapy and the poverty of aged care
When Voltaire, the French philosopher and writer, was on his death-bed in 1778, he was asked by his priest if he renounced Satan, he replied "Now, my good man, this is no time to be making enemies." I heard the quote again the other day when I was talking to a friend about the way that the greatest enemies of progress are often one's own colleagues and friends. The subject came up because of two instances in nursing that had shown how unstable some professional ideologies can be when exposed to critical scrutiny. The first instance was the debate surrounding the publication of David Thompson and Philip Darbyshire's paper Is academic nursing being sabotaged by its own killer elite? (Thompson and Darbyshire, 2013a). In their rejoinder to the paper and subsequent protests, the authors wrote that; Notwithstanding this support … [Read more...] about Making enemies of friends
En la misma semana que WCPT envió una llamada pidiendo a todos a contribuir a su estrategia de futuro (enlace), un documento que demuestra que 'Incluso caminar es más peligroso si eres negro' (enlace) me recordó que el próximo congreso WCPT se celebrará en Sudáfrica en 2017, y esto debe representar una oportunidad de oro para demostrar que la fisioterapia tiene algo importante que decir acerca de lo que es una realidad cotidiana para muchas personas en todo el mundo. El estudio de la revista Transportation Research titulado "sesgo racial en el comportamiento de conductores cediendo el paso en los cruces peatonales” mostró que había claros prejuicios raciales en el comportamiento del conductor dirigido a los peatones, y que" los negros son más propensos a ser ignorados o descuidados por los conductores, que podría conducirlos a un mayor … [Read more...] about Sonambulismo hacia Sudáfrica
In the same week that WCPT sent out a call asking for us all to contribute to its future strategy (link), a paper showing that 'Even walking is more dangerous if you're black' (link) reminded me that the next WCPT congress will be held in South Africa in 2017, and this should represent a golden opportunity to show that physiotherapy has something critical to say about things that are an everyday reality for many people around the world. The study from the journal Transportation Research titled 'Racial bias in driver yielding behavior at crosswalks' showed that there was clear racial bias in driver yielding behaviour directed at pedestrians, and that 'black people are more likely to be ignored or neglected by drivers, which could lead to a greater risk of getting hit by a car' (Vox). This follows on from a similar study which showed … [Read more...] about Sleep walking to South Africa
If you were to design a health care system from scratch, and began with the people you wanted to form key alliances with, who would you choose? Doctors, nurses, occupational therapists, podiatrists...? In the past, the choice might have been easy. Health care was strictly hierarchical and doctors were at the top of the pyramid. No health professional could become established without the patronage of the medical profession. But is that still true today? Health care consumers now have much greater choice when it comes to health providers and they are exercising their choice in innovative and interesting ways. Over-the-counter remedies, alternative and complementary therapies, self-help programmes and personal health promotion strategies, are all subtly changing the power dynamic that has long existed in health care. Billions … [Read more...] about New: Alliances