B.A. (Bachelor of Arts)
School of Allied Health and Communicative Disorders
BACKGROUND: When thinking about older adults and communication, it is perceived that they prefer face-to-face communication. This could also be true with people with Parkinson’s disease because they can have ailments that include speech and/or memory issues. Technology can be used as another form of communication that could help improve effectiveness when speaking with a physical therapist. OBJECTIVE: The objective was to investigate if there is a difference between how older adults with Parkinson’s disease prefer to receive information in a physical therapy setting compared to older adults without Parkinson’s disease. The purpose was to see if there is a preference in communication methods with patients with Parkinson’s disease. METHODS: A total of thirteen people participated in the study, ten people with Parkinson’s disease and three people without Parkinson’s disease. The age range was 63-79 and participants were mostly from Illinois. A survey was taken by participants 60 years and older, patients with or without Parkinson’s disease, and who have had physical therapy before. They were asked questions about the types of communication that could occur in a physical therapy setting such as face-to-face, email, text message, telephone, Facebook, mail, video chat, and a website. If they had used any of these communication methods, they were then asked to rank them on an effectiveness scale and explain their answers. RESULTS: The overall results were that they all preferred face-to-face communication which was ranked highest on the Likert scale. Participants without Parkinson’s disease reported no difficulty with face-to-face communication, but some participants with Parkinson’s disease said that their memory issues can cause the effectiveness of face-to-face communication to decrease. CONCLUSION: Older adults use other types of communication methods that are personally preferred, but the most effective ranked type is face-to-face. Face-to-face communication is useful, but for people who have speech and/or memory problems that feel face-to-face communication is not effective enough for them may want to utilize a secondary communication method.
Bradish, Bailey J., "Communication Among Patients with Parkinson's Disease in a Physical Therapy Setting" (2019). Honors Capstones. 306.
Northern Illinois University
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