New Zealand osteopaths’ attitudes to ‘Evidence-based practice’ – development of a questionnaire and preliminary results

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Wittwer Blaser, Pia
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Master of Osteopathy
Unitec Institute of Technology
Moran, Robert
Standen, Clive
Masters Dissertation
Ngā Upoko Tukutuku (Māori subject headings)
New Zealand osteopaths
evidence-based practice
Wittwer Blaser, P. R. (2009). New Zealand osteopaths’ attitudes to ‘Evidence-based practice’ – development of a questionnaire and preliminary results. Unpublished thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the degree of Master of Osteopathy, Unitec Institute of Technology, New Zealand.
The following research project is divided into three sections. Section one comprises a threepart review of the literature regarding evidence-based practice (EBP). Part one is directed towards a discussion of evidence-based practice which is initially centered on different definitions of evidence based medicine and evidence-based practice and then examines the differences between them. The review also outlines the development of the evidence-based practice concept and describes how it can be applied in clinical practice. The literature is reviewed in terms of the hierarchy of evidence in research and how the hierarchy affects research in complementary therapies including osteopathy. Finally, a discussion about the controversies surrounding evidence-based practice is presented to highlight the continuous evolution of thought within the evidence-based practice movement. The second part of the literature review focuses on attitudes and beliefs and highlights barriers to the application of evidence-based practice in routine clinical practice of osteopaths. Part three is directed towards a discussion of questionnaire-based surveys as a method of gathering data and focuses in particular on the use of the internet as a distribution method for surveys. This part also includes an outline of various forms of bias that may occur in survey research. Section two is structured in the manuscript format specified for submission to the International Journal of Osteopathic Medicine. This section details development of a questionnaire investigating New Zealand osteopaths’ attitudes towards the concept of evidence-based practice. Distribution of the questionnaire through a web-based survey is described and preliminary results are detailed. Section three contains appendices that include the questionnaire, ethics approval, author permission, answers to open-ended questions and the complete correlation matrix detailing the associations identified.
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