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Complexity, Occupational Therapy, Unpredictability and the Scientific Method: a Response to Creek et al (2005) and Duncan et al (2007)

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Two recent articles in this journal have discussed complex systems and differing views of occupational therapy as a complex intervention. This opinion piece develops the discussion of complex adaptive systems and complex interventions further, concluding that all health professions can claim to be complex. Complexity implies a degree of unpredictability. Within patient-centred systems, this means not that complexity cannot and should not be studied, but merely that variability will be experienced and needs to be understood and examined. The Medical Research Council framework provides a rational way of doing so. Research by occupational therapists should grasp this nettle to develop the profession's evidence base.


Document Type: Short Communication

Publication date: December 1, 2007

More about this publication?
  • The British Journal of Occupational Therapy (BJOT) is the official journal of the College of Occupational Therapists. Its purpose is to publish articles relevant to theory, practice, research, education and management in occupational therapy internationally.

    BJOT publishes research articles, critical reviews, practice analyses, opinion pieces, editorials, letters to the editor, book reviews and an annual index. Please refer to the author's guide at http://www.cot.co.uk/british-journal-bjot/british-journal-occupational-therapy

    Submissions can be made at http://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/bjot

    The 2012 Impact Factor for The British Journal of Occupational Therapy is 1.096.

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