Physicians’ Perceptions of Athletic Trainers

in International Journal of Athletic Therapy and Training

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Rebecca M. HirschhornUniversity of South Carolina

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Cassidy HollandDuke University School of Medicine

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Amy F. HandUniversity of South Carolina

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James M. MenschUniversity of South Carolina

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The relationship between athletic trainers (ATs) and physicians is crucial for the continuity of care for patients and can impact the advancement of the athletic training profession. This descriptive study utilized a questionnaire to examine the level of competence physicians believe ATs possess to perform tasks within their scope of practice, as outlined in the Role Delineation Study, 6th ed. Overall, physicians had favorable perceptions of ATs’ competence, with the most favorable perceptions relating to injury/illness prevention and immediate and emergency care. Opportunities should be sought out by ATs to educate physicians on all domains of athletic training practice. Future research should examine how these perceptions may change as athletic training education requirements change.

Hirschhorn is a doctoral student in the Department of Exercise Science, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC. Holland is a student in the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program, Duke University, Durham, NC. Hand is a clinical assistant professor in the Athletic Training Program in the Department of Exercise Science and Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC. Mensch is a clinical associate professor in the Athletic Training Program in the Department of Exercise Science and Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC.

Hirschhorn (hirschhr@email.sc.edu) is corresponding author.
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