Survey of Medical Residents’ Attitude Toward Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

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Abstract

This survey was completed on 600 medical residents in 19 randomly selected teaching hospitals from three Iranian medical universities to delineate some possible factors associated with medical residents’ awareness of and attitude toward 11 specified areas of physical medicine and rehabilitation (PM&R). Fifty-four percent of the participants had a history of consultation with physiatrists. Male residents and those with history of general medicine education in a university having a residency program in PM&R were the most likely to consult with physiatrists. Age and graduation date were not significant predictors of consultation. Residency specialty was the most powerful covariate of consultation rate, with the highest rate of consultation in neurosurgery, neurology, and orthopedics. The best known areas of PM&R were rehabilitation of central nervous system disorders, electrodiagnostic studies, and prescription of physical modalities. The most requested areas of PM&R for collaboration were therapeutic exercise, musculoskeletal and rheumatic disorders, and geriatric rehabilitation. Overall, the residents of various specialties showed different levels of familiarity and attitude toward the different areas of PM&R. This indicates that specific programs are needed to improve PM&R collaboration with all specialties. Policy makers in all levels, from hospital administrators to the ministry of health, need to further enhance the familiarity of medical residents with the field PM&R.

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