Current projects

  • Collaboration partner: Griffith University
    Commenced: 1 November 2021
    Project duration: 1 year

    Project Leads: Professor Louise Gustafsson, School of Health Sciences and Social Work, Menzies Health Institute of Queensland and The Hopkins Centre, Griffith University.

    The project aims to support capability development and guide the provision of assistive technology based on the needs and experiences of both service providers and end-users.

    This project will use multiple methods including interviews, surveys, an audit of publicly available documents and solution building workshop to understand the different types of need related to assistive technology provision and interpret this information to inform future actions. Focus will be on the needs of people who use assistive technology, service providers/ health professionals and care and support scheme representatives.

    The project is uniquely positioned within and builds on current expertise and learnings from the pilot HabITec service, a collaboration initiative between the Hopkins Centre and Metro South Health.

    Collaboration and engagement
    Consumers will be actively engaged in the design and implementation of the project across all stages, including on the reference group and partnering with researchers to undertake project activities. Involvement of other stakeholders such as peak bodies, service providers and care and support scheme agencies is also embedded within the project.

    The NIISQ Agency has had input into the project design to maximise positive impacts for NIISQ participants and the Scheme.

    The NIISQ Agency considers the project will produce real benefits for NIISQ participants and the Scheme including:

    • An essential building block to build provider capacity across Qld in assistive technology prescription
    • The facilitation of assistive technology provision that is sustainable, effective and efficient through understanding of assistive technology needs within Queensland, and
    • The potential to increase participants’ independence, community participation and quality of life through appropriately prescribed assistive technology.

    Total budget $104,087

    The project is anticipated to be completed by November 2022.

  • Collaboration partner: Sporting Wheelies and Disabled Association
    Commenced: 31 August 2021
    Project duration: 2 years

    Project Leads: David Bartholomaeus and Nick Such (Sporting Wheelies and Disabled Association)

    The project aims to improve the health outcomes for inpatients with traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries through participation in sport and active recreation activities during their inpatient stay. It will also provide opportunities for linkages to community sport and recreation activities for patients following their post-hospital stay.

    The project builds on and enhances a previous program developed and run by the Sporting Wheelies and Disabled Association through the Princess Alexandra Hospital brain and spinal cord injury services. An evaluation framework has been embedded in the project design.

    Collaboration and engagement
    The project includes collaboration with experts from the Princess Alexandra Hospital brain and spinal cord injury services, sporting body representatives and researchers from the Hopkins Centre.

    Feedback from people with spinal cord injury and brain injury undertaking the program will be integral to the program design reviews, adjustment and implementation.

    The NIISQ Agency has had input into the project design to maximise positive impacts for NIISQ participants and the Scheme, producing real benefits including:

    • The potential for improved participant health outcomes and increased ability for participants to achieve functional and community participation goals
    • Empowering participants to link into local sport and recreation opportunities within their community following discharge from hospital, and
    • Sustainable continuation of the program via the inclusion of an evaluation framework capturing key outcomes data.

    Total budget $81,200

    The project is anticipated to be completed by mid-2023.

  • Collaboration partner: Metro North Hospital and Health Service
    Commenced: 1 July 2021
    Project duration: 12 months

    Project Leads: Dr David Forrestal (Chief Investigator – Research), Adjunct Associate Professor Peter Slattery (Chief Investigator – Clinical)

    The project aims to develop an advanced manufacturing process consisting of 3D scanning, 3D printing, and 3D modelling to create custom wheelchair cushions optimised to the needs of an individual in terms of pressure management and postural support.

    The project builds upon previously completed work (funded by the Jamieson Trauma Institute) where 3D printed soft foams were developed. The NIISQ Agency support enables continuation of this work to develop 3D printed full sized wheelchair cushions, investigate cushion robustness and develop access pathway and production workflows. Outcomes of this project will be used to plan and justify a clinical trial.

    Collaboration and engagement
    The project includes collaboration with experts from the Queensland Spinal Cord Injury Service (Metro South Health), Queensland Paediatric Rehabilitation Service and the Medical Aids Subsidy Scheme, Qld Health who will provide valuable clinical and implementation advice.

    An important aspect of the project is incorporation of findings from co-design sessions planned with people who use pressure relieving cushions and service providers.

    The NIISQ Agency considers the project will produce real benefits for NIISQ participants and the Scheme including:

    • Facilitating improved pressure injury prevention and postural stability for people using wheelchairs resulting in positive impacts for independence, function and community participation
    • Potential to increase access to pressure injury prevention and management solutions for NIISQ participants across Queensland
    • The opportunity to support a Queensland team researching an innovative solution to a complex problem
    • The opportunity to provide pilot data and lay the groundwork for a clinical trial and subsequent possible commercial production

    Total budget $55,540

    The project is anticipated to be completed by late 2022.

  • Collaboration partner: University of Queensland
    Commenced: May 2021
    Project duration: 12 months

    Key personnel: Professor Jennifer Fleming, Dr Emma Doig, Dr Anna Copley, Dr Emma Finch, Professor Julie Henry.

    The project aims to identify cognitive rehabilitation capacity-building needs for providers in Queensland who work with NIISQ participants, and to use this information to develop and evaluate a cognitive rehabilitation capacity-building program.

    Objectives:

    1. To identify the needs of rehabilitation providers in relation to cognitive rehabilitation training.
    2. To identify the barriers and facilitators to participating in a cognitive rehabilitation capacity building program.
    3. To design and implement a comprehensive capacity building program that includes a suite of educational and support options based on the needs of providers and which takes into account the identified barriers and enablers.
    4. To evaluate the effectiveness of the capacity building program and its individual components on the knowledge, skills and confidence of the recipients of the program.

    The project addresses an identified need by the NIISQ Agency and builds on research and continuing education resources developed by members of the project team. NIISQ Agency has had input into the project design, building on the team’s research base.

    The NIISQ Agency considers the project will produce real benefits for NIISQ participants and the Scheme including:

    • building provider capability and capacity across Queensland in cognitive rehabilitation for people with traumatic brain injury
    • facilitation of evidence-based intervention, improved health outcomes and achievement of functional and participation goals for NIISQ participants
    • providing an opportunity to provide pilot data and lay the groundwork for a scaled-up provider capacity building program.

    Total budget $80,508
    The project is anticipated to be completed by late 2022.

  • Expanding a NSW initiative to involve Queensland.

    Collaboration partner: Metro South Health

    Commenced: March 2021

    Key personnel:  Emilie Gollan (Queensland Project Lead) and Brooke Wadsworth (Queensland delegate), Physiotherapists at Metro South Health.

    The project aim is to improve the care of people with spinal cord injuries by standardising physiotherapy management of people with spinal cord injuries.

    Objectives: 

    1. Develop clinical practice guidelines for physiotherapists and people with spinal cord injury across Australia.
    2. Translate the clinical practice guidelines into physiotherapy clinical practice across Queensland.

    To develop the guidelines, the Queensland team is working with Professor Lisa Harvey (Project Lead) and Associate Professor Joanne Glinsky (Project Coordinator) in NSW, icare (Insurance and Care NSW) and other inter-state representatives, Queensland clinicians, and people with spinal cord injury.

    The Queensland team will lead the guideline translation across Queensland.

    The NIISQ Agency considers the project will produce real benefits for NIISQ participants and the Scheme including:

    • Facilitation of evidence-based intervention and improved health outcomes for NIISQ participants
    • Building provider capability and capacity across Queensland in managing people with spinal cord injury
    • Facilitating NIISQ participants’ health literacy and empowering participants to make informed treatment choices through the creation of the consumer companion to the guideline

    The Agency has contributed $75,325 to the project, which is anticipated to be completed by March 2023.

Last updated: September 2022