kessler foundation_SCI_researchThe Kessler Foundation will conduct a 3-year research study that aims to improve the health and quality of life of military personnel and civilians with spinal cord injury (SCI), according to a Kessler Foundation news release. The study, titled ‘Systematic Assessment of Caregiving Skill Performance by Individuals with Tetraplegia and their Caregivers,’ is funded by a $590,540 grant from a special program in the Department of Defense.

Jeanne M. Zanca, PhD, MPT, senior research scientist in SCI Research at Kessler Foundation, is the principal investigator of the study. The team of investigators is comprised of researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Shepherd Center, and the East Orange Campus of the VA New Jersey Healthcare System.

The goal of the research study is to develop an assessment tool that evaluates the ability of individuals with tetraplegia to direct their care and the ability of their caregivers to properly perform care tasks, as indicated on the Kessler Foundation news release. The tool will help rehab professionals identify and improve the skills for self-directed care in order for individuals to successfully transition to home and community.

The Kessler Foundation news release notes that the assessment tool will be created using feedback from persons with tetraplegia, their caregivers, and SCI clinicians to identify appropriate content for the tool. The tool will be tested in inpatient rehabilitation to determine how the tool should be modified to maximize its effectiveness.

Source: Kessler Foundation