Boston Rehabilitation Outcomes Center
The Boston Rehabilitation Outcomes Center (Boston-ROC), a collaborative of local institutions, including Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and Tufts University, will provide rehabilitation researchers with the most up-to-date outcome measurement tools.
The five-year grant in the range of $4 million is the first of its kind awarded by the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research to examine rehabilitation outcome measures.
In the last decade, there have been many advances in new techniques and methods available to assess outcomes in rehabilitation research, but many researchers continue to use older, more familiar techniques, according to HDR Institute Director Alan Jette. There has not been a cohesive system in place to disseminate new methods and researchers are either unaware of the more recent measuring tools or aren’t skilled and trained in them, he said.
Specifically, Boston ROC will pilot programs that will focus on topics such as
- Evaluating new techniques (to be used in future clinical trials) to monitor the physical activity intensity of children with cerebral palsy;
- Evaluating a touch screen and audio-assisted computer interface of a new outcome instrument that measures factors associated with the re-integration of Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans into their communities;
- Investigating a new assessment instrument designed to evaluate the function and disability among patients undergoing hip or knee reconstruction surgery.
In addition to addressing specific outcome measurement challenges through pilot programs, Boston ROC will host visiting scientists and engage experts from participating institutions to conduct training workshops and web courses and conferences on newer measurement techniques.