Patients with cognitive impairments following a stroke are often denied access to inpatient rehabilitation. The few patients with cognitive impairment admitted to rehabilitation generally receive services based on outdated impairment-reduction models, rather than recommended function-based approaches. Both reduced access to rehabilitation and the knowledge-to-practice gap stem from a reported lack of skills and knowledge regarding cognitive rehabilitation on the part of inpatient rehabilitation team members. To address these issues, a multi-faceted knowledge translation (KT) initiative will be implemented and evaluated. It will be targeted specifically at the inter-professional application of the cognitive orientation to daily occupational performance (CO-OP). CO-OP training combined with KT support is called CO-OP KT. The long-term objective of CO-OP KT is to optimize functional outcomes for individuals with stroke and cognitive impairments. Three research questions are posed:
1. Is the implementation of CO-OP KT associated with a change in the proportion of patients with cognitive impairment following a stroke accepted to inpatient rehabilitation?
2. Is the implementation of CO-OP KT associated with a change in rehabilitation clinicians’ practice, knowledge, and self-efficacy related to implementing the CO-OP approach, immediately following and 1 year later?
3. Is CO-OP KT associated with changes in activity, participation, and self-efficacy to perform daily activities in patients with cognitive impairment following stroke at discharge from inpatient rehabilitation and at 1-, 3-, and 6-month follow-ups?
Three interrelated studies will be conducted. Study 1 will be a quasi-experimental, interrupted time series design measuring monthly summaries of stroke unit level data. Study 2, which relates to changes in health care professional practice and self-efficacy, will be a single group pre-post evaluation design incorporating chart audits and a self-report survey. Study 3 will assess patient functional outcomes using a non-randomized design with historical controls. Assessments will occur during admission and discharge from rehabilitation and at 1, 3, and 6 months following discharge from rehabilitation.
This project will advance knowledge about the degree to which the implementation of a supported KT initiative can sustainably change health system, knowledge, and patient outcomes.
Cognitive orientation to daily occupational performance; Stroke; Cognitive impairment; Rehabilitation; Knowledge translation; Interrupted time series; Protocol