Occupational therapists’ awareness of guidelines for assessment and diagnosis of developmental coordination disorder: Mesure selon laquelle les ergothérapeutes connaissent les lignes directrices relatives à l’évaluation et au diagnostic du trouble du développement de la coordination

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Abstract

Background.

Developmental coordination disorder (DCD) is a motor skills disorder that can have negative lifelong psychosocial impacts if not diagnosed. Occupational therapists have a role in facilitating a diagnosis for children with DCD through assessment.

Purpose.

The purpose of this study was to determine the level of understanding of current DCD guidelines for assessment and diagnosis among occupational therapists working in paediatric settings in British Columbia, Canada.

Method.

An online survey was e-mailed to occupational therapists who consented to be contacted for research purposes; 169 paediatric therapists responded. Data were reported using percentage, mean, and standard deviation of responses for each answer.

Findings.

Although many occupational therapists are aware of DCD and the diagnostic criteria, most are unaware of current guidelines for assessment and diagnosis. Many are using cutoff scores inconsistent with current recommendations and thus may not be facilitating a diagnosis when one may be appropriate.

Implications.

Occupational therapists may benefit from targeted education regarding DCD assessment and diagnosis.

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