Background: One billion of the world's population have some form of disability which require rehabilitation or assistive technology. These numbers are steadily increasing as chronic diseases and injuries are becoming more prevalent. In Africa, there are millions people with disability without any access or quality rehabilitation.
Rehabilitation must ideally be delivered with an evidence-based framework and this requires capacity development. We explored the perspectives of stakeholder on how to build capacity in evidence-based rehabilitation guidelines within an African context.
Methods: We used a qualitative approach and conducted semi-structured interviews with key informants, using semi-structured questions. Saturation was identified when no new information for any question was provided in the penultimate or final interviews obtained from individuals in any of the informant clusters.
All interviews were audiotaped and then independently transcribed. For structured content analysis, all transcripts were transferred into a data bundle in Atlas.ti. We established reliability in theme identification between two of the researcher using randomly-selected interviews.
Results: The key themes which emerged from the data include readiness to take up CPG development and implementation, clinical practice guideline skills development, user-friendly format and accessibility of rehabilitation CPGs and strategies to collaborate and pool resources for CPG capacity building in rehabilitation in Africa.
Conclusion: The WHO has identified rehabilitation as a key health strategy for the 21st century and a human right for those who need it. Our findings provide a framework to build capacity in evidence-based clinical practice guidelines which should be recognised by key stakeholders and operationalised to impact rehabilitation in Africa.