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Client-centred Rehabilitation: Four Case Studies of Inpatient Rehabilitation

With an aging population, there are an increasing number of people in Canada who suffer from serious long-term disabilities, and many of these people need rehabilitation in hospital. One way of improving services in hospital rehabilitation units is to use a client-centred approach to care. This approach views patients and professionals as equal partners and recognizes that services need to be tailored to the individual.

The purpose of this study is to evaluate client-centred rehabilitation (CCR) for adults with long-term disabilities needing inpatient rehabilitation. CCR refers to a philosophy or approach to the delivery of rehabilitation that reflects the needs of individuals and groups of clients. This study has two major objectives with respect to client-centred care as it applies to adult clients suffering from serious long-term disabilities needing inpatient rehabilitation:

  1. to understand the characteristics of the organization, rehabilitation team, staff, clients and families that are associated with perceived client-centredness of inpatient rehabilitation service units;
  2. to determine if differences in client-centred rehabilitation are associated with differences in the community reintegration of clients with ongoing disability post-discharge from inpatient rehabilitation units.

The researchers will collect information from patients, families, health professionals, staff and administrators using questionnaires, in-depth interviews and observations of day-to-day hospital activities. A case study research design will compare information from four different rehabilitation units in two large teaching hospitals in Ontario.

This project is funded by a Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) operating grant. Collaborators on this project are St. John’s Rehabilitation Hospital and the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute.

ACREU Investigator: Dr. Cheryl Cott

Study Co-ordinator: Kathleen Bednis