Developing a musculo-skeletal screening survey for Indigenous Australians living in rural communities

Vindigni, D, Parkinson, L, Rivett, D, Da Costa, C, Perkins, J, Walker, B and Blunden, M 2006, 'Developing a musculo-skeletal screening survey for Indigenous Australians living in rural communities', Rural and Remote Health, vol. 6, no. 1, pp. 321-335.

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Developing a musculo-skeletal screening survey for Indigenous Australians living in rural communities
Author(s) Vindigni, D
Parkinson, L
Rivett, D
Da Costa, C
Perkins, J
Walker, B
Blunden, M
Year 2006
Journal name Rural and Remote Health
Volume number 6
Issue number 1
Start page 321
End page 335
Total pages 15
Publisher Deakin University
Abstract INTRODUCTION - Indigenous Australians living in rural communities experience high levels of musculoskeletal conditions that significantly impair their daily activities. Aboriginal health workers (AHWs) have a close understanding of their communities' needs and play a central role in the assessment and management of these conditions. To assist in the musculoskeletal assessment process a screening survey was collaboratively developed, trialled and evaluated for use by AHWs. METHOD - A cross-sectional survey was developed following discussions with key community informants, and a literature review for relevant survey instruments. It was piloted before being administered by AHWs and the findings compared with those of a clinical assessment conducted by musculoskeletal health professionals. The participants included 189 members of an Australian rural Indigenous community. RESULTS - The screening survey achieved face and content validity. It provided high sensitivity (above 70%) and moderately high specificity (above 60%) for measuring musculoskeletal conditions in this community. It did not achieve high enough Kappa scores when measuring agreement between the screening tool and clinical assessment. A significant correlation was, however, obtained between the most prevalent musculoskeletal condition and between reported overall pain as assessed by AHWs and chiropractors. CONCLUSION - The screening survey has applicability in this community and has the potential to be adapted in similar settings. Incorporating a basic range of motion and palpation assessment to localise painful anatomical sites may help to further improve the sensitivity and specificity of this instrument.
Subject Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified
Keyword(s) Aboriginal
Musculoskeletal conditions
musculoskeletal screening survey questionnaire
ISSN 1445-6354
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