Research Traditions at the LBIRU
The LBIRU has had a long history of conducting research and education concurrently with the provision of clinical rehabilitation services. The contemporary LBIRU research programme focuses on the broad aim of alleviating the consequences of TBI. The programme is currently involved in a wide range of different research projects, including single-centre and multi-centre projects.
The projects cover a wide variety of research topics but can be broadly categorised into the following six research areas: biomedical; health-services; clinical focusing on functional issues; clinical focusing on psychosocial issues; population health; and cognition/neuropsychological intervention. Projects are conducted internally as well as in partnership with academic institutions, other rehabilitation services and community-based service providers at a state, national and international level.
Why Participate in Research?
Many people with TBI and their families have expressed a wish to help others who may be going through a similar experience. Research has been identified by some people with TBI and their families as a direct means of achieving this.
From the unit’s perspective, participation in research allows us to improve client care specifically in the field of TBI rehabilitation. We do this by a process called “evidence-based practice” (EBP). EBP is a means of objectively evaluating the effectiveness of current rehabilitation interventions, and accordingly implementing interventions into the clinical setting that have been shown to be effective.
Research participation can take many different forms, and can involve people with TBI, their support network of family, and the therapy staff who are providing the rehabilitation. Participation may include trialling a new intervention such as a fitness training programme, attending a new therapy group such as a social skills group, or answering questions about how the person with TBI and their family are coping after a brain injury.
Participation in our service satisfaction questionnaires allows clients the opportunity to voice their opinion anonymously regarding the positive and negative features of our service. The responses received from these surveys are utilised as part of service evaluation to aid in improving the quality of our service.