Working in the time of COVID-19: Rehabilitation clinicians’ reflections of working in Gauteng’s public healthcare during the pandemic

African Journal of Disability

Field Value
Title Working in the time of COVID-19: Rehabilitation clinicians’ reflections of working in Gauteng’s public healthcare during the pandemic
Creator van Biljon, Hester M. van Niekerk, Lana
Subject rehabilitation; COVID-19; pandemic; public healthcare rehabilitation therapists; persons with disability; pandemic; public healthcare users; COVID-19; disorder and confusion; reflective practice; inter-professional communication; disaster; leadership; personal protective equipment; multidisciplinary rehabili
Description Background: When the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic manifested in South Africa, rehabilitation services were seriously affected. The consequences of these were wide-ranging: affecting service users, their families and caregivers, rehabilitation practices and practitioners as well as the integrity and sustainability of rehabilitation systems.Objectives: This study aimed to explore the nature and consequences of disruption caused by the pandemic, based on the experience of rehabilitation clinicians who were working in public healthcare facilities in Gauteng.Methods: This was a phenomenology study that used critical reflection method. Trained and experienced in reflecting on barriers and enablers that affect their practices, a multidisciplinary group of rehabilitation clinicians captured their experience of working during the time of COVID-19. Data construction extended over 6 months during 2020. An inductive thematic analysis was performed using Taguette: an open-source qualitative data analysis tool.Results: The main themes captured the disorder and confusion with its resultant impact on rehabilitation services and those offering these services that came about at the beginning of the pandemic. The importance of teamwork and leadership in rehabilitation also emerged as themes. Other themes related to having to approach work differently, working beyond professional scopes of practice and pandemic fatigue.Conclusion: The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the way rehabilitation was being performed, creating an opportunity to reconceptualise, strengthen and improve rehabilitation services offered at public healthcare. The presence of effective leadership with clear communication, dependable multidisciplinary teams and clinicians with robust personal resources were strategies that supported rehabilitation clinicians whilst working during COVID-19.
Publisher AOSIS
Date 2022-04-28
Type info:eu-repo/semantics/article info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion — sequential critical reflection design
Format text/html application/epub+zip text/xml application/pdf
Identifier 10.4102/ajod.v11i0.889
Source African Journal of Disability; Vol 11 (2022); 9 pages 2226-7220 2223-9170
Language eng
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Coverage South Africa; Gauteng from 14 April 2020 to 30 October 2020 average age 40; occupational therapists, physiotherapists, podiatrists, speech and audiology therapists
Rights Copyright (c) 2022 Hester M. van Biljon, Lana van Niekerk