The impact of COVID-19 pandemic public health measures on the practice of primary care allied health professionals in Manitoba and Ontario
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The purpose of this study was to investigate how the public health measures implemented in Manitoba and Ontario during waves 1 and 2 of the COVID-19 pandemic impacted allied health professionals working in primary care settings. This study used a case study methodology to develop four cases, two allied health professionals from Manitoba and two allied health professionals of the same professions from Ontario. Two methods of data collection were used, diary entry and interview. Diary entry data was collected between March 2020 and August 2020. Interviews were conducted in December 2020. This study’s approach to data analysis was to use the framework analysis to apply a conceptual framework, specifically the Roy Adaptation Model. The Roy Adaptation Model encompasses four adaptive modes: role function, interdependence, group identity, and physiological. The results section presents how each of these modes were operationalized for each case. The public health measures affected the role function mode more significantly than the other modes. All participants experienced role disruptions with redeployment and role change with the transition to remote and virtual care. The allied health providers in both provinces experienced role reductions with limitations in their ability to practice their primary role. The implemented COVID-19 public health measures led providers to work within their roles in an adapted capacity during the length of the pandemic. The greatest differences between the experiences of providers in Ontario versus Manitoba was the timeline of events and the response of the provincial governments. This study highlights how macro policies influence the day-to-day of healthcare workers.