Evaluation of Practice
Therapy consists first of the selection of an appropriate treatment for a particular condition and, second, of evaluation of the treatment once it has been implemented. The group study approach has been the traditional method used for determining the most appropriate therapy for a given condition. Typically, the outcomes of a treated and no-treatment control group are compared. If differences can be shown between the two groups, it may be concluded that the treatment is having an effect. It is important to note, however, that therapy is essentially client-centred; a treatment that appears to be effective for the majority of the population may fail if a client's characteristics do not conform to those of the general group. It is argued here that the single-case experimental approach not only facilitates the selection of the most appropriate treatment for the individual patient, but can also provide an evaluation of the effectiveness of the therapy. © 1991, The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy. All rights reserved.