A scoping review of 10 years of published literature on community-based rehabilitation.
PURPOSE: To identify the characteristics of peer-reviewed literature on community-based rehabilitation (CBR) in low- and middle-income countries published in English from 2003 to 2012.
METHODS: This scoping review involved a systematic search of electronic databases using specific keyword/subject heading combinations. Journal articles were included if they were published in English, used "CBR" as related to rehabilitation with persons with disabilities and not limited to high-income countries (HICs). Data were charted according to both pre-determined and emergent categories. A subset of articles was charted by two reviewers to ensure reliability of variables.
RESULTS: A total of 114 articles were included. Fifty-two articles presented empirical research and 49 were published in one of two journals. The articles represented CBR activity in 26 specific countries, although only two of these were in Europe and only one was in the Americas. Authors were predominantly affiliated at universities and in HICs.
CONCLUSIONS: This scoping review identified and characterized a large pool of literature on CBR, facilitating its incorporation into research and practice. Future research should examine the engagement of persons with disabilities in creating CBR literature, and analysis of literature in languages other than English. Implications for Rehabilitation Community-based rehabilitation (CBR) has been promoted as a rehabilitation strategy of choice in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), but it has been critiqued for lack of an evidence base. A large number (114) of peer-reviewed articles were published on CBR between 2003 and 2012. Just under half of these articles (45%) presented empirical research, indicating that the evidence base for CBR is growing but will benefit from continued, rigorous inquiry. Furthermore, researchers from LMICs appear to be largely under-represented in published CBR research, flagging the need to support LMIC partners to share their CBR research in peer-reviewed journals.