Cerebral palsy care in South Africa: a paradigm shift
The word ‘paradigm’, derived from the Greek paradeigma, refers to a ‘framework’ or ‘a very clear and typical example of something’.1 A paradigm shift thus signifies a change in the demand for certain competencies and/or expertise within a specific framework.
This certainly applies to patients affected by cerebral palsy (CP) in a developed world context. The domain of childhood CP has entered a new paradigm which entails significant changes regarding patient profile, treatment approach, outcomes and expectations. After an initially slow uptake, the developed world has now successfully adjusted to a broader biopsychosocial approach. Most of the developing world, however, still lacks a structured framework with the ability to accommodate and address the needs of this changing cohort of patients.