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Mapping physiotherapy use in Canada in relation to physiotherapist distribution

Shah, Tayyab and Milosavljevic, Stephan and Trask, Catherine and Bath, Brenna (2019) Mapping physiotherapy use in Canada in relation to physiotherapist distribution. Physiotherapy Canada, NA . NA. ISSN 0300-0508

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Purpose: In this cross-sectional study, we examined the distribution of physiotherapists at the health region level across Canada in relation to self-reported physiotherapy use across the provinces and territories. Method: We drew on two data sources: the physiotherapy use question from the 2014 Canadian Community Health Survey and physiotherapists’ primary employment information, obtained from the Canadian Institute of Health Information’s 2015 Physiotherapist Database. We then applied geospatial mapping and Pearson’s correlation analysis to the resulting variables. Results: Physiotherapy use is moderately associated with the distribution of physiotherapists (Pearson’s r92 = 0.581, p < 0.001). The use and distribution variables were converted into three categories using SDs of 0.5 from national means as cut-off values. Cross-classification between the variables revealed that 15.2% of health regions have a high use–high distribution ratio; 18.5% have a low use–low distribution ratio; 4.3% have a high use–low distribution ratio; 2.2% have a low use–high distribution ratio; and 60.0% have medium use–medium distribution ratio. Conclusions: The distribution of physiotherapists and self-reported physiotherapy use varies across health regions, indicating a potential inequality in geographical access. Given that most provinces have a regionalized approach to health human resources and health service delivery, these findings may be helpful to managers and policy-makers and may allow them to make a more granular comparison of intra- and inter-provincial differences and potential gaps.

Item Type: Journal Article
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Divisions: Faculty of Science, Technology and Environment (FSTE) > School of Geography, Earth Science and Environment
Depositing User: Tayyab Shah
Date Deposited: 02 Jul 2019 02:44
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2019 02:44

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