Evidence-based practice in optometry: Validation of a modified Fresno Test.

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Abstract text
Background:
There is a need for various health professions to be able to acquire training and demonstrate competency in Evidence-based Practice (EBP). The Fresno test was developed to assess knowledge and skills in evidence based medicine and successfully modified for use by physical therapists. There is no existing tool to measure optometrists’ competencies in EBP.

Objectives:
To develop and validate a modified Fresno test to assess optometrists’ competence in EBP.

Methods:
Fresno tests were modified to include optometry specific scenarios and related questions: eight short-answer questions, two questions requiring mathematical calculations and three fill-in-the-blank questions. A standardised scoring rubric was used with a maximum score of 224. The test was applied to 16 postgraduate students of the School of Optometry and Vision Science at the University of New South Wales, eight of whom had recently completed a course in Evidence-based Optometry. Two raters independently scored the responses. Psychometric properties of the modified instrument were evaluated.

Results:
The modified Fresno test was completed by 16 participants. The internal consistency (Cronbach’s α,0.82) and inter-rater reliability (ICC = 0.82) were good. Although trained participants (score 77.6 ± 38.3) tended to perform better than untrained participants (score 71.5 ± 49.3), this was not statistically significant (p>0.05). Both groups performed poorly on questions involving mathematical calculations.

Conclusions:
The modified Fresno test for optometry shows promise as a test of competency in EBP. Further refinements and validation of the test using optometrists with a high level of expertise in EBP are underway.
Authors
Alnahedh T1, Suttle C1, Thompson R1, TOGHER L2, Jalbert I1
1 The University of New South Wales, Australia
2 THE UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY, Australia
Presenting author and contact person
Presenting author: 
Taghreed Alnahedh
Contact person Affiliation Country
Taghreed Alnahedh (Contact this person) UNSW Australia