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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 340371, 8 pages
Research Article

Physiotherapists Have Accurate Expectations of Their Patients’ Future Health-Related Quality of Life after First Assessment in a Subacute Rehabilitation Setting

1Centre for Functioning and Health Research, Buranda Plaza Corner Ipswich Road and Cornwall Street, Buranda, QLD, Australia
2School of Public Health and Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, Queensland University of Technology, Kelvin Grove, QLD, Australia
3Rotman Research Institute, Bathurst Street, Baycrest, Toronto, ON, Canada
4School of Physiotherapy, the University of Notre Dame Australia, Mouat Street, Fremantle, WA, Australia
5Southern Health, Allied Health Research Unit, Kingston Centre, Cnr Warrigal and Kingston Roads, Cheltenham, VIC, Australia
6Physiotherapy Department, School of Primary Health Care, Monash University, Monash University Peninsular Campus, VIC, Australia

Received 30 April 2013; Accepted 19 September 2013

Academic Editor: Michael Rapp

Copyright © 2013 Steven M. McPhail et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Expectations held by health professionals and their patients are likely to affect treatment choices in subacute inpatient rehabilitation settings for older adults. There is a scarcity of empirical evidence evaluating whether health professionals expectations of the quality of their patients’ future health states are accurate. Methods. A prospective longitudinal cohort investigation was implemented to examine agreement (kappa coefficients, exact agreement, limits-of-agreement, and intraclass-correlation coefficients) between physiotherapists’ ( ) prediction of patients’ discharge health-related quality of life (reported on the EQ-5D-3L) and the actual health-related quality of life self-reported by patients ( ) at their discharge assessment (using the EQ-5D-3L). The mini-mental state examination was used as an indicator of patients’ cognitive ability. Results. Overall, 232 (85%) patients had all assessment data completed and were included in analysis. Kappa coefficients (exact agreement) ranged between 0.37–0.57 (58%–83%) across EQ-5D-3L domains in the lower cognition group and 0.53–0.68 (81%–85%) in the better cognition group. Conclusions. Physiotherapists in this subacute rehabilitation setting predicted their patients’ discharge health-related quality of life with substantial accuracy. Physiotherapists are likely able to provide their patients with sound information regarding potential recovery and health-related quality of life on discharge. The prediction accuracy was higher among patients with better cognition than patients with poorer cognition.