Benefits and Challenges of Telerehabilitation Use By Pediatric Physiotherapists During the COVID-19 Pandemic In Western and Southern India: A Cross Sectional Survey
Keywords:COVID-19, Pediatric physiotherapists, Telehealth, Telerehabilitation
As the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic spread, many physiotherapists chose telerehabilitation (TR) to continue delivering therapy. This study was conducted to document the perceived benefits and challenges of TR faced by pediatric physiotherapists in western and southern India. Using the snowball method, electronic survey forms were distributed to 275 pediatric physiotherapists in Western and Southern India; 110 responses were available for analysis. A majority of respondents had experience with TR (n=83, 75.5%), while others had never used TR (n=27, 24.5%). TR was reported to be less effective than in-person therapy for treating children and adolescents during the COVID-19 pandemic. Therapists reported significant difficulties during TR sessions; these included assessing and modifying exercises for children. As the popularity of TR grows, pediatric physiotherapists will need to be aware of the benefits and challenges they will face during TR sessions. Most pediatric physiotherapists believed the interaction between parents and therapists is a requisite for optimal service delivery.
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