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Training family to assist with physiotherapy for older people transitioning from hospital to the community: A pilot randomized controlled trial


Lawler, K and Shields, N and Taylor, NF, Training family to assist with physiotherapy for older people transitioning from hospital to the community: A pilot randomized controlled trial, Clinical Rehabilitation, 65, (3) pp. 166-171. ISSN 0269-2155 (2019) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2019 the authors

DOI: doi:10.1177/0269215519853874


Objective: To investigate the safety and effectiveness of augmenting physiotherapy with family-assisted therapy, to inform a future, fully powered trial.

Design: Parallel pilot randomized controlled trial.

Setting: Transition Care Program.

Participants: Thirty-five older adults with multimorbidity, recently hospitalized, with a mean age of 84.1 years (SD = 6.1 years) and mean Modified Barthel Index of 67.8 units (SD = 19.2 units), and 40 family members.

Interventions: The control group (n = 18) received usual physiotherapy care. The experimental group (n = 17) received usual physiotherapy care and family-assisted therapy from a family member trained by a physiotherapist.

Main measures: Primary outcomes were falls-related self-efficacy measured by the Short Falls Efficacy Scale International and falls during the intervention period. Secondary outcomes included daily steps, EQ-5D-3L (three-level version of the EuroQoL five-dimensional health-related quality of life questionnaire) and ICECAP-O (ICEpop CAPability measure for Older people), Modified Barthel Index and Modified Caregiver Strain Index.

Results: There were no between-group differences for falls-related self-efficacy. Relative to the control group, the experimental group was observed to have a reduced risk of falling (relative risk = 0.38, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.09-1.60) and a reduced falls rate (incidence rate ratio = 0.22, 95% CI = 0.04-1.20) was of borderline statistical significance. The experimental group walked a mean of 944 daily steps more than the control group (95% CI = 139-1748) and had a significant reduction in activity limitation. There were no between-group differences for quality of life or caregiver strain.

Conclusion: Augmenting physiotherapy with family-assisted therapy is feasible for older people transitioning from hospital to the community. A fully powered randomized controlled trial is indicated.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:physiotherapy, family, caregiver, training, physical activity, older adults
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Allied health and rehabilitation science
Research Field:Physiotherapy
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Provision of health and support services
Objective Field:Allied health therapies (excl. mental health services)
UTAS Author:Lawler, K (Dr Katherine Lawler)
ID Code:133255
Year Published:2019
Web of Science® Times Cited:9
Deposited By:Wicking Dementia Research and Education Centre
Deposited On:2019-06-19
Last Modified:2021-07-05
Downloads:12 View Download Statistics

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