Content » Vol 42, Issue 3

Original report

Development and preliminary reliability testing of an assessment of patient independence in performing a treatment program: Standardized scenarios

Marcie Harris-Hayes, Gregory W. Holtzman, Jeanne A. Earley, Linda R. Van Dillen
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-0505


Background: Physical therapists often assess patient independence through observation; however, it is not known if therapists make these judgments reliably. We have deve­loped a standardized method to assess a patient’s ability to perform his or her treatment program independently.
Objectives: To develop a standardized assessment of patient independence in performance of a treatment program and examine the intra- and inter-rater reliability decisions made by two physical therapists.
Design: Test-retest.
Methods: An assessment of patient independence in performance was developed. Standardized patient scenarios were used to assess the intra- and inter-tester reliability of two physical therapists. Percentage of agreement (%) and kappa’s coefficient (k and kw) indexed rater reliability.
Results: Intra-rater reliability of therapist 1 was as follows: knowledge: % = 95, k = 0.90; performance: % = 95, kw = 0.82. Intra-rater reliability of therapist 2 was as follows: know­ledge: % = 85, k = 0.68; performance: % = 94, kw = 0.80. Inter-rater reliability for knowledge was % = 91 and k = 0.79 and for performance was % = 91 and kw = 0.72.
Conclusion: Trained therapists displayed substantial to excellent intra-rater reliability and substantial inter-rater reliability in assessing a patient’s independence in a treatment program.

Lay Abstract


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