Orthotic Teaching and Practice Model Developed

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Citing lack of a holistic model upon which foot orthotic practice is taught, practiced, or investigated, a research team published a paper to introduce a model of foot orthosis practice with a range of factors pertinent to orthotic practice. The researchers believe that the model builds on existing evidence, invites constructive intellectual debate, and is anchored in the practitioners' experiences.

Within their Value Based Foot Orthosis Practice (VALUATOR) model, the authors considered foot orthotic design and clinical value along a bio-psycho-social-digital continuum that reflects foot orthotic practice. The model contextualizes the outcomes that are observed in research and practice within six areas: value, person-centered approach, zone of optimal bio-psycho-social stress, bio-psycho-social assessment, monitoring, and primary and secondary clinical strategies. VALUATOR also considers three pillars in foot orthotic design practice: geometric features, material properties, and visual properties.

The model is targeted at students, lecturers, scientists, and practitioners and includes terminology to support educational and scientific discussion.  The researchers say that testing the VALUATOR model will help support further developments in the evolution of orthotic practice.

The open-access study, "The biopsychosocial-digital continuum of foot orthosis practice and research: the VALUATOR model," was published in the Journal of Foot and Ankle Research.