Title

Social and occupational participation in adults with spinal cord injury and the influence of occupational therapy practice on those outcomes

Start Time

24-10-2008 11:30 AM

End Time

24-10-2008 12:00 PM

Abstract

Several researchers have found that engagement in occupation relates to life satisfaction and has a positive relationship to health and well-being. Cottrell found that there is a significant lack of support in addressing social, vocational and living priorities of individuals with disabilities. The authors will present data and emerging interpretations from an ongoing study investigating three research questions: 1) How do individuals living in the community 1 to 5 years post spinal cord injury characterize their occupational and social participation, 2) Where do they rate themselves according to their definition of a good life and 3) What, if any, aspects of individuals‚ occupational therapy service influenced their occupational and social participation and, ultimately, their life satisfaction. Data are collected through open-ended, semi-structured interviews with individuals with spinal cord injury who were referred by occupational therapists who specialize in working with individuals with spinal cord injury and/ or have been peer nominated and self-identified as practicing from an occupation-based perspective. To date, we have completed interviews with 10 individuals who range from 11 months to 5 years post spinal cord injury. Thematic and narrative analysis methods are applied to the data. Preliminary findings include social engineering; the importance of having friends, doing meaningful occupations with them, and strategies that support participation; giving back as a means of recreating identity; and adaptive strategies used to create a positive life with spinal cord injury. Important aspects of occupational therapy include collaboration and individualizing therapy, deeply listening and caring, making therapy challenging and fun, and doing with/being with. This paper promises to elucidate the participants‚ perceptions of social and occupational participation and the influence of occupational therapy on those outcomes. These findings may have general applicability to rehabilitation professionals beyond occupational therapists and may lead to better rehabilitation practices for individuals with spinal cord injury.

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Oct 24th, 11:30 AM Oct 24th, 12:00 PM

Social and occupational participation in adults with spinal cord injury and the influence of occupational therapy practice on those outcomes

Several researchers have found that engagement in occupation relates to life satisfaction and has a positive relationship to health and well-being. Cottrell found that there is a significant lack of support in addressing social, vocational and living priorities of individuals with disabilities. The authors will present data and emerging interpretations from an ongoing study investigating three research questions: 1) How do individuals living in the community 1 to 5 years post spinal cord injury characterize their occupational and social participation, 2) Where do they rate themselves according to their definition of a good life and 3) What, if any, aspects of individuals‚ occupational therapy service influenced their occupational and social participation and, ultimately, their life satisfaction. Data are collected through open-ended, semi-structured interviews with individuals with spinal cord injury who were referred by occupational therapists who specialize in working with individuals with spinal cord injury and/ or have been peer nominated and self-identified as practicing from an occupation-based perspective. To date, we have completed interviews with 10 individuals who range from 11 months to 5 years post spinal cord injury. Thematic and narrative analysis methods are applied to the data. Preliminary findings include social engineering; the importance of having friends, doing meaningful occupations with them, and strategies that support participation; giving back as a means of recreating identity; and adaptive strategies used to create a positive life with spinal cord injury. Important aspects of occupational therapy include collaboration and individualizing therapy, deeply listening and caring, making therapy challenging and fun, and doing with/being with. This paper promises to elucidate the participants‚ perceptions of social and occupational participation and the influence of occupational therapy on those outcomes. These findings may have general applicability to rehabilitation professionals beyond occupational therapists and may lead to better rehabilitation practices for individuals with spinal cord injury.