Title

How can physical therapists engage the social ecology of health to mitigate service disruptions in a post-COVID world?

Department

Physical Therapy

Abstract

The role for physical therapists related to addressing the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis is still crystallizing in acute and post-acute settings. It is not too early to begin learning from the recent unprecedented disruptions in physical therapists' ability to provide care related to public health orders for infection control. Emerging evidence suggests that disruptions to health services, such as COVID infections and outcomes, are associated with various population characteristics. These observations suggest the importance of multilevel strategies for physical therapists to mitigate future service disruptions. The purpose of this perspective is to propose a set of practice, research, and advocacy imperatives using the social–ecological model of health. The viewpoint describes the model and then applies it to COVID-related health service disruptions. The perspective then culminates in a specific set of practice, research, and policy recommendations that can be applied to the current experience with COVID-19 and also potential future sources of service disruption, such as future epidemics and climate change.

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

Spring 4-1-2021

Publication Title

Cardiopulmonary Physical Therapy Journal

ISSN

1541-7891

Volume

32

DOI

10.1097/CPT.0000000000000149

First Page

S4

Last Page

S7

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