Like the Wise Men in the Christmas story, colleagues from Connect and academic partners at the University of Northumbria brought gifts for the MSK world (apologies for the tenuous season link!).
In brief (submitted for publication in 2017) it’s a retrospective, multi-centre study of EQ5D outcomes for more than 4,000 NHS patients, which shows significant improvement exceeding previous sparsely published data for EQ5D change with physiotherapy interventions. 70% of patients have significant quality of life improvement after a course of physiotherapy. This will be the only large multi-centre study published of community physiotherapy.
So good news but…
Surprisingly it is the only study of its kind and we need more, much more.
The study was done retrospectively over 5 centres (in different parts of England) over 4 years, so will have involved over 100 physiotherapy colleagues. However, all were working for one employer (Connect Health) so does the case study demonstrate the value of physiotherapy overall or are there variances between providers?
Until there is more visibility from across the profession, we don’t know.
Come on everyone, let’s get collecting and reporting. We need to know what works and what doesn’t. If we (physios) don’t know (and we know very little), then how can we expect cash strapped commissioners to continue to invest in physiotherapy?