Do We Listen to Children’s Voices in Physical and Occupational Therapy? A Scoping Review

Phys Occup Ther Pediatr. 2021 Dec 16:1-22. doi: 10.1080/01942638.2021.2009616. Online ahead of print.


AIMS: The aim of this study was to investigate the extent, range and nature of research activity specifically reporting the inclusion of the voices of children or adolescents when therapists are setting therapy goals and implementing therapy.

METHODS: We conducted a scoping review and searched the following electronic bibliographic databases: Pedro, SciELO, Google Scholar, MEDLINE, EMBASE, Web of Science and CINAHL. We included primary studies focusing on involvement of children and/or adolescents in goalsetting, decision-making or conduct of physical or occupational therapy. Results are presented descriptively and narratively.

RESULTS: Nineteen studies were included presenting various instruments or strategies for involvement. We found sparse evidence that children and adolescents with disabilities were included in therapy goal setting using goal setting instruments, especially children under 5 years of age or with communicative or cognitive disabilities.

CONCLUSIONS: There are few studies reporting the way in which the voices of children or adolescents are heard in therapy. Further research is needed to develop new methods and studies with stronger designs are needed to determine the extent to which listening to children’s voices affects therapeutic outcomes.

PMID:34915802 | DOI:10.1080/01942638.2021.2009616

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