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Stroke Project

Responding to the psychological and social needs of people with stroke: Integrating theory and practice in post-discharge rehabilitation

Many current services for people with stroke neglect psychosocial dimensions of rehabilitation and lack coordinated early intervention focus

Rehabilitation practice following stroke needs to be developed on the basis of distinct and relevant theoretical frameworks that highlight the expansion of coping resources

Individuals with stroke and their family members

Key Features
Developing a practical, cost effective psychosocial support intervention for people who have sustained a stroke based on current social and psychological theories

Implementing and evaluating the intervention to determine effectiveness and impact on psychosocial well-being of people with stroke and their family members

ARC SPIRT funding

Conducted in association with School of Human Services, Griffith University, Social and Preventive Medicine at the University of Queensland and the Southside Division of General Practice

Research / Evaluation Strategies
Randomised longitudinal experimental design examining improvements in rehabilitation trajectories following stroke

People randomised to active intervention (psychosocial support and self management program) or control group (stroke information and resources)

Interviews (qualitative) and a range of biopsychosocial measures (quantitative) completed at four points in time

Outputs and Outcomes
The intervention was developed on the basis of the Chronic Disease Self Management Program (Lorig, 1996) and psychosocial models of coping and partnership in healthcare.

Participants identified a range of benefits, including social contact and comparison, awareness and knowledge about stroke, motivation to pursue goals and activities and a sense of achievement and self efficacy.

Information gathered regarding the sustainability of outcomes and translation into day-to-day behaviour was inconclusive

Evidence base for development of the STEPS Program

Catalano, T., Dickson, P., Kendall, E., Kuipers, P., & Posner, N.T. (2003). The perceived benefits of the chronic disease self-management program among participants with stroke: a qualitative study. Australian Journal of Primary Health, 9(2 &3), 80-89.

Kendall, E., Catalano, T., Kuipers, P., Posner, N., Buys, N. & Charker, J. (in press). Adjustment following stroke: The role of self-management education. Social Science and Medicine, 64(3), 735-746.

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Last updated: 7 September 2017