Research for more sustainable rehabilitation services to improve patient wellbeing and social inclusion

The Centre for Digital Technologies for Rehabilitation brings together clinicians, researchers, digital technology developers, service users and policy makers to address some of the key challenges faced in developing and delivering rehabilitation.

Why focus on rehabilitation?

The WHO reports that there are >2.4 billion people globally with health conditions that could benefit from rehabilitation. This number will increase significantly with population trends (e.g., ageing), increase in non-communicable diseases (e.g., stroke, brain injuries, cancer) and long-term conditions (e.g., multiple sclerosis), and climate crises (affecting health following natural disasters).

Rehabilitation improves quality of life and contributes to societal and economic wellbeing.

The need for rehabilitation is growing and is predicted to grow even more in the coming years, but many people who need rehabilitation still do not receive high-quality rehabilitation at the right time and intensity level. The demand for rehabilitation has already outstripped the supply of services, and this demand-supply gap is likely to grow further with current population and disease trends. Technology has a role to play in addressing this problem, but to harness its potential, more research is needed on the (a) effectiveness (and the mechanisms that underpin its effectiveness), (b) sustainable delivery, and (c) implementation of rehabilitation (especially with increased pressures on healthcare providers and systems). These are some of the challenges our Centre will address, embedding digital technologies within our programmes of research.

Alternativ tekst vises når bildet ikke kan lastes
Photo: Shutterstock (Ground Picture)