Identifying physiotherapist and patient expectations in private practice physiotherapy

M.J. Potter, Sandy Gordon, P.W. Hamer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: This study focused on determining physiotherapist and patient expectations in private practice physiotherapy.Method: The Nominal Group Technique was implemented with separate groups of physiotherapists (n= 37) and patients (n= 26) to identify their expectations of themselves and each other.Results: The most important expectations of physiotherapists related to patient behaviours, including that patients would show them respect and trust, be punctual and compliant, and take an active role in rehabilitation. Conversely, the most important patient expectations were for symptomatic relief, self-management strategies, and "hands on" treatment-all part of the physical domain. When matching expectations, physiotherapists attributed more importance to how they behave with patients, such as providing professional and ethical care, active listening, and being caring and empathic, but patients ranked the nature of the treatment provided by physiotherapists as most important.Conclusions: Based on the findings from this study, we suggest that it is important for physiotherapists to identify patient expectations, and this can be effectively achieved by adopting a patient-centred approach to management.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-202
JournalPhysiotherapy Canada
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2003


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