Low Vision Rehabilitation Plans Comparing Two Intake Methods

J.E. Bruijning, R.M.A. van Nispen, D.L. Knol, G.H.M.B. van Rens

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Purpose. This qualitative study investigates possible differences in identified rehabilitation needs indicated by the usual intake procedures at a Multidisciplinary Rehabilitation Center (MRC) for visually impaired persons compared with those indicated by the use of a structured Dutch version [based on the International Classification of the Disability, Functioning and Health (ICF)] of the Activity Inventory (D-AI). Methods. Twenty patients who enrolled at the MRC received a D-AI assessment by telephone, in addition to the usual intake. All patients received usual care, based on rehabilitation needs identified by the usual intake procedure at the MRC. Rehabilitation needs identified at the MRC were obtained from patient files retrospectively and were compared with rehabilitation needs identified by the D-AI. Results. The mean number of rehabilitation needs reported in the patient files was 6.9 (±5.1) vs. 24.0 (±11.2) using the D-AI. Only 22.6% (±14.3) of the rehabilitation needs identified by the D-AI were present in the patient files; 79.3% (±28.2) of the rehabilitation needs reported in the patient files were identified by the D-AI. Overall agreement corrected for chance between both intake methods revealed a fair Cohen kappa of 0.27. Conclusions. At the MRC, more needs were revealed using the D-AI compared with the usual intake procedure. The systematic character of the D-AI prevents important topics being overlooked. In the usual intake, it was not clear whether needs were investigated from the patient's perspective. This may hamper (medical) communication and shared decision making about the rehabilitation program that needs to be followed. Moreover, using the unstructured information from the patient files makes it difficult to evaluate rehabilitation outcomes. With the D-AI, although an extensive overview of rehabilitation needs is produced, it remains difficult to focus on the most relevant needs. However, after assessment with the D-AI, all aspects of the ICF, Disability, and Health scheme can be discussed in a process of shared decision making, which leads to the final determination of rehabilitation goals. © 2012 American Academy of Optometry.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)203-214
JournalOptometry and vision science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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