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Why is telerehabilitation necessary? A pre-post COVID-19 comparative study of ICF activity and participation

Nicola Marotta (Universita degli Studi Magna Graecia di Catanzaro, Catanzaro, Italy)
Andrea Demeco (Universita degli Studi Magna Graecia di Catanzaro, Catanzaro, Italy)
Lucrezia Moggio (Universita degli Studi Magna Graecia di Catanzaro, Catanzaro, Italy)
Antonio Ammendolia (Universita degli Studi Magna Graecia di Catanzaro, Catanzaro, Italy)

Journal of Enabling Technologies

ISSN: 2398-6263

Article publication date: 19 May 2021

Issue publication date: 28 June 2021

841

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to evaluate the relevance of telerehabilitation during the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic based on the prevalence of participation and activity International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) domains in a population with disabilities.

Design/methodology/approach

We perfomed an observational study of ICF files of people with disabilities pre- and post-three-months lockdown imposed by the government to stop the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Findings

ICF qualifiers such as performing the daily routine (d230), using communication devices and techniques (d360) and doing housework (d640) showed a significant decrease of the disabilities (p < 0.05). Instead, a significant increase (p < 0.05) in disability was evident in relating with strangers (d730); informal social relationships (d750); acquiring, keeping and terminating a job (d845); complex economic transactions (d865); community life (d910); and recreation and leisure (d920).

Practical implications

Telerehabilitation should not be regarded as home-based rehabilitation delivered through technology. The results show how telerehabilitation should be a functional diagnostic tool and monitoring of patients’ rehabilitation needs.

Originality/value

Through a comprehensive classification scale of disability, it is possible to redefine the term telerehabilitation.

Keywords

Citation

Marotta, N., Demeco, A., Moggio, L. and Ammendolia, A. (2021), "Why is telerehabilitation necessary? A pre-post COVID-19 comparative study of ICF activity and participation", Journal of Enabling Technologies, Vol. 15 No. 2, pp. 117-121. https://doi.org/10.1108/JET-11-2020-0047

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

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