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Original Research Articles

Management of Undergraduate Community-Based Rehabilitation Programmes in the Philippines: A Cross-Sectional Survey


Pocholo B Trinidad,

School of Medicine, Emilio Aguinaldo College, Manila, PH
About Pocholo B

Pocholo B. Trinidad received his Doctor of Medicine degree from the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery at the University of Santo Tomas and obtained his Masters in Rehabilitation Science from the University of Philippines, Manila. He also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Therapy from Emilio Aguinaldo College, Manila. He is currently a faculty member in the School of Medicine, Emilio Aguinaldo College, Manila. His research interests are impact of physical activities in rehabilitation and disability, community-based rehabilitation, support services in rehabilitative practice and quality of life.

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Litty M Shibu,

Physiotherapy Department, College of Medical and Health Sciences, Ahlia University, BH
About Litty M

Litty Shibu has a Master's degree in Hospital Administration from Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences, Bangalore, India. She previously worked as a Lecturer at the College of Medical & Health Sciences, Ahlia University, Bahrain. She holds a PhD from Brunel University London in the area of Knowledge Translation.  She is currently working as an Asst. Professor at College of Business & Finance and as a Coordinator at Center for Teaching & Learning at Ahlia University. Her research interests are knowledge management, continuing professional development and teaching, learning & assessment in higher education institutions (HEIs). 

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Napoleon R Caballero,

College of Physical Therapy, Metropolitan College of Arts, Science and Technology, Manila, PH
About Napoleon R

Napoleon has a Master’s Degree in Public Administration and a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Therapy from Emilio Aguinaldo College. He is the former President of the Philippine Physical Therapy Association (PPTA) and the current Head of the PPTA Community Based Rehabilitation Special Interest Group. Additionally, he is the current Dean of the College of Physical Therapy of Metropolitan Medical Center College of Arts, Science and Technology; and accreditor of The Philippine Association of Colleges and Universities Commission on Accreditation specifically in the areas of faculty, instruction and laboratory. His research interests are in the field of community-based rehabilitation management and quality assurance for physical therapy education. 

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Ebrahim Rajab

School of Medicine, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, 228 Busaiteen, BH
About Ebrahim

Ebrahim Rajab holds a BSc (Hons) in Physiology & Sports Science from the University of Glasgow, a MSc in Physiotherapy from the University Of Ulster and PhD in Physiology and Pharmacology from the University of Nottingham. He was previously the Chairperson of the Physiotherapy Department, Ahlia University, Bahrain. Currently, he is Lecturer in Human Biology, School of Medicine, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Bahrain. His research interests include diabetes, nutrition and physical activity.

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Purpose: The survey aimed to identify common strengths and weaknesses regarding the characteristics, management and implementation of Community-Based Rehabilitation (CBR) training in the undergraduate curriculum of Schools of Physical Therapy in the Philippines, and make recommendations for improvement.

Method: A survey was conducted with the academic heads of CBR departments in 10 Physical Therapy schools. The institutions were selected through cluster sampling according to regional location. Nine of these were private institutions. Data was collected through a 24-item self-assessment survey distributed to the heads of the participating colleges /departments.

Results: A number of strengths and weaknesses were identified. The strengths were: all schools had a 1 to 2-month clinical CBR course integrated into their undergraduate curriculum; CBR courses were supported by a course syllabus, learning outcomes, student assessment and clinical training manual; 80% of institutions had implementing policies and guidelines governing management of the CBR programme(s); at least one physiotherapist was involved in the management of the CBR programme(s); and, CBR activities were delivered in coordination with key stakeholders management, with emphasis on delivery of physical therapy services, disability prevention, health education, participation of persons with disabilities and community awareness. The weaknesses were: no head/programme coordinator for 30% of CBR programmes; 40% did not have clinical coordinators as designated management positions in the CBR programme; only 50% of academic staff received formal CBR training, of which 80% was provided through CBR summits and professional interaction with other physical therapists; and, only 50% of schools adopted a multidisciplinary approach to service delivery which was focused on the Health domain of the CBR Matrix.

Conclusion: The CBR component of the undergraduate physical therapy curriculum in the Philippines can be improved. A shift in the teaching to transdisciplinary care and inter-professional learning is recommended. Regular review of the CBR indicators should be done by the schools, including the key stakeholders. Challenges for CBR implementation were recruitment of community volunteers as CBR workers, availability of indigenous resources and finances to support CBR activities, and family participation in the rehabilitation of a relative with a disability. Each school should determine whether current human resources and training are adequate. Schools must be encouraged to jointly identify common problems in CBR education and share solutions.

How to Cite: Trinidad, P.B., Shibu, L.M., Caballero, N.R. and Rajab, E., 2020. Management of Undergraduate Community-Based Rehabilitation Programmes in the Philippines: A Cross-Sectional Survey. Disability, CBR & Inclusive Development, 31(1), pp.47–73. DOI:
Published on 06 Aug 2020.


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