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Healthcare professionals' perceived barriers and facilitators of implementing clinical practice guidelines for stroke rehabilitation: A systematic review

Cormican, A., Hirani, S. P. ORCID: 0000-0002-1577-8806 & McKeown, E. ORCID: 0000-0002-4183-5376 (2022). Healthcare professionals' perceived barriers and facilitators of implementing clinical practice guidelines for stroke rehabilitation: A systematic review. Clinical Rehabilitation, 37(5), pp. 701-712. doi: 10.1177/02692155221141036


OBJECTIVE: To identify healthcare professionals' perceived barriers and facilitators to clinical practice guideline implementation within stroke rehabilitation.

DATA SOURCES: CINAHL, MEDLINE, EMBASE, AMED, Cochrane library, Academic Search Complete and Scopus. Additional papers were identified through hand searching.

REVIEW METHODS: The review followed the Preferred Reporting Item for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis Protocols systematic review approach. Any empirical research that provided qualitative data on healthcare professionals' perceived factors influencing clinical guideline implementation in stroke rehabilitation was included. One reviewer screened all titles and abstract reviews (n = 669). Another two reviewers independently screened 30% of title and abstract reviews, followed by full-text reviews (n = 61). Study quality was assessed using the mixed-method appraisal tool.

RESULTS: Data from 10 qualitative, six quantitative and six mixed-method studies published between 2000 and 2022, involving 1576 participants in total, were analysed and synthesised using modified thematic synthesis approach. The majority of participants were therapists n = 1297 (occupational therapists, physiotherapists, speech and language therapists). Organisational factors (time constraints, resources) alongside healthcare professionals' lack of knowledge and skills were the most cited barriers to guideline implementation. Contradictory attitudes and beliefs towards stroke guidelines applicability to real-life clinical practice and their evidence base were reported. Organisational support in the form of training, local protocols, performance monitoring and leadership were reported as perceived facilitators.

CONCLUSION: Barriers and facilitators are multifactorial and were identified at guideline, individual, team and organisational levels. There is a need to translate perceived barriers and facilitators into implementation interventions especially addressing organisational-level barriers.

Publication Type: Article
Publisher Keywords: Health care professional, Clinical practice guideline, stroke rehabilitation, barriers, facilitators
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Healthcare Services Research & Management
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