Background Children with cerebral palsy have difficulties in several areas of functioning, and they need long-lasting rehabilitation with a clear focus on the individual's needs. Finnish guidelines emphasize family-centred service. The values of family-centred service are widely known, but how the principles of family-centred service are adopted in clinical practice is not well documented. The objective of this study was to analyse the family-centred behaviour of professionals working with children and adolescents with cerebral palsy.
Methods A translated version of the Measure of Processes of Care for Service Providers (MPOC-SP) questionnaire was used to evaluate the family-centred service. The questionnaire was sent to all the professionals in the multidisciplinary rehabilitation teams at all the hospitals and governmental special schools treating children and adolescents with cerebral palsy in Finland (n= 327). Furthermore, 438 physiotherapy service providers working in the children's home region were invited to participate.
Results A total of 201 multidisciplinary team members and 311 physiotherapy service providers completed the questionnaire. Both the team members and the service providers generally rated their family-centred behaviour positively. There was statistically significant difference in how the team members in the multidisciplinary teams self-assessed their family-centred service. Physiotherapists working in multidisciplinary teams rated their family-centred service higher than physiotherapy service providers. The professional's apprehension of family-centred service increased with work experience.
Conclusions Professional background and professional context seem to affect the apprehension of family-centred service. Also work experience and being part of a multidisciplinary team have an influence on how the professionals embrace the family-centred service delivered. The MPOC-SP can be used to identify areas for improvement.