One of elements of this project is to conduct a survey of healthcare professionals. This means that we will write a list of questions that we want the relevant health professionals to answer. The survey will ask questions about topics such as how patients get referred to them, how often they see patients and how they would judge if the orthotic is working for the patient.
Surveys can be conducted over the phone, face to face, be sent by post or electronically via the internet. We have chosen to use the internet and create a web based survey because it is a fast, simple and cost efficient way of reaching large numbers of people. We believe that there may be differences across the country in terms of what services are available to patients and we want to make sure that we find out what these differences are. By using a web survey, we can hopefully reach a range of health professionals all over the country.
The same questions are sent to everyone we want to join in the survey. The questions are formulated to try and make sure that everyone will understand them in the same way so the answers are consistent and provide the information we want to collect. This is the big challenge for any survey. To help us make sure we’ve got it right we will test the survey on a small number of health professionals. This will tell us what it’s like for participants to complete, including how long it takes, and allow us to make sure the questions are being answered in the way we anticipate.
The results of the survey will be the collective answers that we get. They should give us an idea of what orthotic services are provided to patients and how much NHS resources are used to provide these services. This will help us to estimate the cost of these services to the NHS.
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