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Open Access Research article

Reorganizing pediatric rehabilitation services to improve accessibility: do we sacrifice quality?

Chantal Camden123*, Bonnie Swaine2345, Sylvie Tétreault678 and Marie-Michèle Brodeur19

Author Affiliations

1 Estrie Rehabilitation Center, Sherbrooke, Québec, Canada

2 Center of Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Research, Montréal, Québec, Canada

3 École de réadaptation, Université de Montréal, Québec, Canada

4 Institut de réadaptation Gingras-Lindsay de Montréal, Québec, Canada

5 Centre de réadaptation Lucie-Bruneau, Montréal, Québec, Canada

6 Département de réadaptation, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada

7 Institut de réadaptation en déficience physique de Québec, Québec, Québec, Canada

8 Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation and Social Integration, Québec, Québec, Canada

9 Université de Sherbrooke, Québec, Canada

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BMC Health Services Research 2010, 10:227  doi:10.1186/1472-6963-10-227

Published: 5 August 2010

Abstract

Background

The impact of a pediatric rehabilitation service delivery reorganization to improve access to services on parents' and service providers' perception of service quality was evaluated. Child-, family-, service- and service provider-related characteristics possibly associated with these perceptions were explored.

Methods

Perceptions were measured using the Measure of Processes of Care tools and open ended questions before (2007), during (2008) and following (2009) service reorganization. Child and family characteristics, services received and service provider data were documented. Mean MPOC scores were compared over time (ANOVAs and Generalized Estimating Equations) and t-tests, correlations and ANOVAs determined whether the characteristics influenced scores.

Results

Families' (n = 222) and service providers' (n = 129) perceptions of quality were high in 2007 (3.67 to 6.31/7) and remained high over the next 2 years (p ≥ 0.16). Two MPOC domain scores (Respectful care and Providing general information) were consistently scored the highest (mean ≥ 5.66/7) and the lowest (mean ≤ 4.75/7), respectively. Families with more education and those with children 12-21 years old tended to attribute lower MPOC scores. Participants were generally satisfied with the new service model and recommendations included improving information exchange.

Conclusions

Results suggest that it is possible to reorganize pediatric rehabilitation services while maintaining quality.