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O'Brien L.,Monash University | Loughnan A.,The Alfred | Purcell A.,Princess Alexandra Hospital | Haines T.,Allied Health Research Unit | Haines T.,Monash University
Supportive Care in Cancer | Year: 2014

Purpose: Education-based interventions for cancer-related fatigue have shown promise in adults undergoing radiotherapy. Research on the cancer-related fatigue intervention trial (CAN-FIT) programme found that pre-radiotherapy fatigue information and support (pre-RFES) did not improve levels of fatigue, but was associated with improvements in activity-based outcomes. We aimed to measure whether pre-RFES resulted in greater participant self-ratings of their performance of daily living activities, fatigue, quality of life and distress. Methods: Thirty people undergoing radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy were randomly allocated to either a 1-h RFES session from the CAN-FIT programme (delivered individually to participants and modified where necessary for patients undergoing chemotherapy) or standard care. Measures were taken pre- and post-treatment and 6 weeks after completing treatment. Results: There was no significant difference between groups on performance of daily living activities or ratings of distress. Further analysis found a significant difference between the control and treatment groups for EQ-5D health state visual analogue scale (-9.05 [-18.09; -0.018]; p < 0.05) and physical fatigue (2.86 [0.58; 5.14]; p < 0.02) with the treatment group rating their overall health state worse and their physical fatigue higher than the controls. Conclusions: Pre-RFES delivered individually did not significantly improve participants' ratings of their performance of daily occupations and was unexpectedly associated with worse overall health state and higher physical fatigue. Future trials, ideally comparing individual and group education to exercise programmes or cognitive-behavioural approaches, are recommended to examine the broader question of whether discussing fatigue might actually make participants feel worse. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.


Kent P.,University of Southern Denmark | Laird R.,Monash University | Haines T.,Monash University | Haines T.,Allied Health Research Unit
BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders | Year: 2015

Background: The aims of this pilot trial were to (i) test the hypothesis that modifying patterns of painful lumbo-pelvic movement using motion-sensor biofeedback in people with low back pain would lead to reduced pain and activity limitation compared with guidelines-based care, and (ii) facilitate sample size calculations for a fully powered trial. Methods: A multicentre (8 clinics), cluster-randomised, placebo-controlled pilot trial compared two groups of patients seeking medical or physiotherapy primary care for sub-acute and chronic back pain. It was powered for longitudinal analysis, but not for adjusted single-time point comparisons. The intervention group (n∈=∈58) received modification of movement patterns augmented by motion-sensor movement biofeedback (ViMove, dorsaVi.com) plus guidelines-based medical or physiotherapy care. The control group (n∈=∈54) received a placebo (wearing the motion-sensors without biofeedback) plus guidelines-based medical or physiotherapy care. Primary outcomes were self-reported pain intensity (VAS) and activity limitation (Roland Morris Disability Questionnaire (RMDQ), Patient Specific Functional Scale (PSFS)), all on 0-100 scales. Both groups received 6-8 treatment sessions. Outcomes were measured seven times during 10-weeks of treatment and at 12, 26 and 52 week follow-up, with 17.0 % dropout. Patients were not informed of group allocation or the study hypothesis. Results: Across one-year, there were significant between-group differences favouring the intervention group [generalized linear model coefficient (95 % CI): group effect RMDQ -7.1 (95 % CI-12.6;-1.6), PSFS -10.3 (-16.6; -3.9), QVAS -7.7 (-13.0; -2.4); and group by time effect differences (per 100 days) RMDQ -3.5 (-5.2; -2.2), PSFS -4.7 (-7.0; -2.5), QVAS -4.8 (-6.1; -3.5)], all p∈<∈0.001. Risk ratios between groups of probability of improving by >30 % at 12-months∈=∈RMDQ 2.4 (95 % CI 1.5; 4.1), PSFS 2.5 (1.5; 4.0), QVAS 3.3 (1.8; 5.9). The only device-related side-effects involved transient skin irritation from tape used to mount motion sensors. Conclusions: Individualised movement retraining using motion-sensor biofeedback resulted in significant and sustained improvements in pain and activity limitation that persisted after treatment finished. This pilot trial also refined the procedures and sample size requirements for a fully powered RCT. This trial (Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry NCT01572779) was equally funded by dorsaVi P/L and the Victorian State Government. © 2015 Kent et al.; licensee BioMed Central.


Hill A.-M.,The University of Notre Dame Australia | McPhail S.M.,Queensland University of Technology | McPhail S.M.,Center for Functioning and Health Research | Waldron N.,Armadale Kelmscott Memorial Hospital | And 9 more authors.
The Lancet | Year: 2015

Background Falls are the most frequent adverse events that are reported in hospitals. We examined the effectiveness of individualised falls-prevention education for patients, supported by training and feedback for staff, delivered as a ward-level programme. Methods Eight rehabilitation units in general hospitals in Australia participated in this stepped-wedge, cluster-randomised study, undertaken during a 50 week period. Units were randomly assigned to intervention or control groups by use of computer-generated, random allocation sequences. We included patients admitted to the unit during the study with a Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) score of more than 23/30 to receive individualised education that was based on principles of changes in health behaviour from a trained health professional, in addition to usual care. We provided information about patients' goals, feedback about the ward environment, and perceived barriers to engagement in falls-prevention strategies to staff who were trained to support the uptake of strategies by patients. The coprimary outcome measures were patient rate of falls per 1000 patient-days and the proportion of patients who were fallers. All analyses were by intention to treat. This trial is registered with the Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials registry, number ACTRN12612000877886). Findings Between Jan 13, and Dec 27, 2013, 3606 patients were admitted to the eight units (n=1983 control period; n=1623 intervention period). There were fewer falls (n=196, 7·80/1000 patient-days vs n=380, 13·78/1000 patient-days, adjusted rate ratio 0·60 [robust 95% CI 0·42-0·94], p=0·003), injurious falls (n=66, 2·63/1000 patient-days vs 131, 4·75/1000 patient-days, 0·65 [robust 95% CI 0·42-0·88], p=0·006), and fallers (n=136 [8·38%] vs n=248 [12·51%] adjusted odds ratio 0·55 [robust 95% CI 0·38 to 0·81], p=0·003) in the intervention compared with the control group. There was no significant difference in length of stay (intervention median 11 days [IQR 7-19], control 10 days [6-18]). Interpretation Individualised patient education programmes combined with training and feedback to staff added to usual care reduces the rates of falls and injurious falls in older patients in rehabilitation hospital-units. Funding State Health Research Advisory Council, Department of Health, Government of Western Australia. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.


Hill A.-M.,The University of Notre Dame Australia | Etherton-Beer C.,University of Western Australia | Haines T.P.,Monash University | Haines T.P.,Allied Health Research Unit
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

Background:The aims of the study were to evaluate the effect of providing tailored falls prevention education in hospital on: i) engagement in targeted falls prevention behaviors in the month after discharge: ii) patients' self-perceived risk and knowledge about falls and falls prevention strategies after receiving the education.Methods:A pilot randomized controlled trial (n = 50): baseline and outcome assessments conducted by blinded researchers. Participants: hospital inpatients 60 years or older, discharged to the community. Participants were randomized into two groups. The intervention was a tailored education package consisting of multimedia falls prevention information with trained health professional follow-up, delivered in addition to usual care. Outcome measures were engagement in falls prevention behaviors in the month after discharge measured at one month after discharge with a structured survey, and participants' knowledge, confidence and motivation levels before and after receiving the education. The feasibility of providing the intervention was examined and falls outcomes (falls, fall-related injuries) were also collected.Results:Forty-eight patients (98%) provided follow-up data. The complete package was provided to 21 (84%) intervention group participants. Participants in the intervention group were significantly more likely to plan how to safely restart functional activities [Adjusted odds ratio 3.80, 95% CI (1.07, 13.52), p = 0.04] and more likely to complete other targeted behaviors such as completing their own home exercise program [Adjusted odds ratio 2.76, 95% CI (0.72, 10.50), p = 0.14] than the control group. The intervention group was significantly more knowledgeable, confident and motivated to engage in falls prevention strategies after receiving the education than the control group. There were 23 falls (n = 5 intervention; n = 18 control) and falls rates were 5.4/1000 patient days (intervention); 18.7/1000 patient days (control).Conclusion:This tailored education was received positively by older people, resulted in increased engagement in falls prevention strategies after discharge and is feasible to deliver to older hospital patients.Trial registration: The study was registered with the Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry; ACTRN12611000963921 on 8th November 2011. © 2013 Hill et al.


Williams C.M.,Allied Health Research Unit | Tinley P.,Charles Sturt University | Rawicki B.,Monash Health
Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association | Year: 2014

Background: Idiopathic toe-walking (ITW) is a condition commonly seen by podiatric physicians. Because a toe-walking gait style is also caused by or associated with many other medical conditions, podiatric physicians should pay particular attention to ensuring an accurate diagnosis. There are many reported treatment options available for ITW. Therefore, a literature review was conducted to determine what treatment options are supported by the evidence as having the best long-term effect on ITW gait. Methods: After extraction of relevant articles, 21 manuscripts reporting treatment options for ITW gait were appraised against the levels of evidence. Results: From these articles, there was no single treatment option reported as having a long-term effect on the gait of children with ITW. There was support in the literature for surgical interventions, serial casting, and the use of botulinum toxin type A. There was limited evidence that footwear or orthoses changed the gait pattern. Conclusions: This review updates the knowledge of podiatric physicians, enhances how children who present with this gait style can be managed, and highlights areas for future research.


Haines T.,Allied Health Research Unit | Haines T.,Monash University | O'Brien L.,Monash University | McDermott F.,Monash University | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Clinical Epidemiology | Year: 2014

Objectives Disinvestment is critical for ensuring the long-term sustainability of health-care services. Key barriers to disinvestment are heterogeneity between research and clinical settings, absence of evidence of effectiveness of some health technologies, and exposure of patients and organizations to risks and poor outcomes. We aimed to develop a feasible research design that can evaluate disinvestment in health technologies of uncertain effectiveness or cost-effectiveness. Study Design and Setting This article (1) establishes the need for disinvestment methodologies, (2) identifies the ethical concerns and feasibility constraints of conventional research designs for this issue, (3) describes the planning, implementation, and analytical framework for a novel disinvestment-specific study design, and (4) describes potential limitations in application of this design. Results The stepped-wedge, roll-in cluster randomized controlled trial can facilitate the disinvestment process, whereas generating evidence to determine whether the decision to disinvest was sound in the clinical environment. A noninferiority research paradigm may be applied to this methodology to demonstrate that the removal of a health technology does not adversely affect outcomes. Conclusion This research design can be applied across multiple fields and will assist determination of whether specific health technologies are clinically effective, cost-effective, and safe. © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Haines T.P.,Allied Health Research Unit | Kent F.,Monash University | Kent F.,Peninsula Health | Keating J.L.,Monash University
Journal of Interprofessional Care | Year: 2014

Interprofessional student clinics can be used to create clinical education placements for health professional students in addition to traditional hospital-based placements and present an opportunity to provide interprofessional learning experiences in a clinical context. To date, little consideration has been given in research literature as to whether such clinics are economically viable for a university to run. We conducted an economic evaluation based upon data generated during a pilot of an interprofessional student clinic based in Australia. Cost-minimization analyses of the student clinic as opposed to traditional profession-specific clinical education in hospitals were conducted from university, Commonwealth Government, state government and societal perspectives. Cost data gathered during the pilot study and market prices were used where available, while $AUD currency at 2011 values were used. Per student day of clinical education, the student clinic cost an additional $289, whereas the state government saved $49 and the Commonwealth Government saved $66. Overall, society paid an additional $175 per student day of clinical education using the student clinic as opposed to conventional hospital-based placements, indicating that traditional hospital-based placements are a cost-minimizing approach overall for providing clinical education. Although interprofessional student clinics have reported positive patient and student learning outcomes, further research is required to determine if these benefits can justify the additional cost of this model of education. Considerations for clinic sustainability are proposed. © 2014 Informa UK Ltd.


Lee D.-C.A.,Allied Health Research Unit | McDermott F.,Monash University | McDermott F.,Monash Medical Center | Hoffmann T.,Bond University | And 2 more authors.
Health Education Research | Year: 2013

The objectives of this study were to describe the sources of falls prevention information provided to older adults during and after hospitalization, identify and explore reasons why discussion about falls prevention may not take place. Six participant groups were interviewed using semi-structured interviews or focus groups: (i) older patients (n=16); (ii) caregivers (n=8); (iii) allied health and nursing professionals (n=33); (iv) doctors from acute wards (n=8); (v) doctors from subacute wards (n=10) and (vi) general practitioners (n=9). Participants were recruited from three Australian hospitals that provided acute and subacute in-patient services to the older adults. General practitioners were recruited from the community of Melbourne. Findings showed provision of falls prevention information was dependent on setting of the ward and which health professionals the older adult encountered during and after hospitalization. Medical practitioners were reactive in providing information, whereas older adults and their caregivers were passive in seeking falls prevention information. Several barriers in information provision and information seeking were identified.© The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.


Haas R.,Allied Health Research Unit | Haines T.P.,Allied Health Research Unit | Haines T.P.,Monash University
Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics | Year: 2014

Several randomised trials demonstrate that multi dimensional falls prevention programs are effective in reducing falls in older adults. There is a need to examine the impact of these programs in real life settings where diverse populations exist. The aim of this study was to examine the acceptability and impact on sustained participation in falls prevention activities of a combined exercise and education falls prevention program. A semi structured telephone interview was conducted with 23 participants 12 months following the completion of a 15 week falls prevention program tailored to diverse communities in Victoria, Australia and provided in both a group and home based format. Reported benefits of the falls prevention program included physical improvements in joint flexibility, mobility and balance and enjoyment derived from both the exercises and socialisation. Recall of the educational component was minimal as were ongoing behavioral changes to reduce the risk of falling other than exercise. Participation in sustained exercise for falls prevention following the completion of the program was also inconsistent. Future improvements of such programs could focus upon ensuring the exercises prescribed are sufficiently challenging for each individual in order to be of physical benefit, altering the educational style to be goal directed and more enjoyable, and integrating further strategies to support sustained participation in falls prevention behavioral changes. Linking participants with alternate ongoing exercise opportunities or potential sources of ongoing support may be advantageous in enhancing long term participation in exercise for falls prevention following cessation of the program. © 2013.


McPhail S.,Center for Functioning and Health Research | McPhail S.,Queensland University of Technology | Haines T.,Allied Health Research Unit | Haines T.,Monash University
Health and Quality of Life Outcomes | Year: 2012

Background: Expectations held by patients and health professionals may affect treatment choices and participation (by both patients and health professionals) in therapeutic interventions in contemporary patient-centered healthcare environments. If patients in rehabilitation settings overestimate their discharge health-related quality of life, they may become despondent as their progress falls short of their expectations. On the other hand, underestimating their discharge health-related quality of life may lead to a lack of motivation to participate in therapies if they do not perceive likely benefit. There is a scarcity of empirical evidence evaluating whether patients' expectations of future health states are accurate. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the accuracy with which older patients admitted for subacute in-hospital rehabilitation can anticipate their discharge health-related quality of life.Methods: A prospective longitudinal cohort investigation of agreement between patients' anticipated discharge health-related quality of life (as reported on the EQ-5D instrument at admission to a rehabilitation unit) and their actual self-reported health-related quality of life at the time of discharge from this unit was undertaken. The mini-mental state examination was used as an indicator of patients' cognitive ability.Results: Overall, 232(85%) patients had all assessment data completed and were included in analysis. Kappa scores ranged from 0.42-0.68 across the five EQ-5D domains and two patient cognition groups. The percentage of exact correct matches within each domain ranged from 69% to 85% across domains and cognition groups. Overall 40% of participants in each cognition group correctly anticipated all of their self-reported discharge EQ-5D domain responses.Conclusions: Patients admitted for subacute in-hospital rehabilitation were able to anticipate their discharge health-related quality of life on the EQ-5D instrument with a moderate level of accuracy. This finding adds to the foundational empirical work supporting joint treatment decision making and patient-centered models of care during rehabilitation following acute illness or injury. Accurate patient expectations of the impact of treatment (or disease progression) on future health-related related quality of life is likely to allow patients and health professionals to successfully target interventions to priority areas where meaningful gains can be achieved. © 2012 McPhail and Haines; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

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