Rehabilitation Research During and after the COVID-19 Pandemic: Emergent Strategies From a Trainee-Faculty Workshop Conference Paper uri icon

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  • Research Objectives

    1) To identify challenges for conducting ongoing and future rehabilitation research during and after the COVID-19 pandemic, and 2) to develop strategies that can support ongoing and future rehabilitation research.


    A two-hour facilitated online workshop with guided discussion.


    Online workshop synchronously recorded via Zoom.


    Trainees (14 doctoral; 2 MSc students; 1 post-doctoral fellow) and research faculty (5 physiotherapy; 3 occupational therapy), School of Rehabilitation Science, McMaster University, Canada.


    Not applicable.

    Main Outcome Measures

    Workshop transcript and field notes were cross-compared by 4 workshop facilitators from which 3 main categories emerged: 1) pandemic protocol adjustment, 2) participant accessibility, and 3) knowledge dissemination.


    1) Pandemic protocol adjustment: Workshop participants identified concerns with transitioning pre- to post-pandemic research, such as variations in intervention protocols and psychometric properties of virtually guided outcome assessments. Strategies identified: Delivering toolkits containing equipment needed for virtually guided assessments, and their comprehensive psychometric evaluation prior to use. 2) Participant accessibility: Virtually guided rehabilitation research may present barriers to participation for some populations due to a lack of internet access and proficiency. Strategies identified: Including community stakeholders in the decision-making process to help guide the development of safe and feasible study protocols, and simplifying protocols to maintain participants’ adherence. 3) Knowledge dissemination: Virtually delivered conferences have required additional preparation time due to requirements of pre-recorded presentations, and hinder important conversations between conference attendees. Strategies identified: Researchers should account for delays in knowledge translation plans for funding applications, and conference organizers should consider hosting networking events for attendees.


    This workshop served as a catalyst for creative solutions to complex methodological challenges that can be integrated within existing and future rehabilitation-focused studies during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

    Author(s) Disclosures



  • Noguchi, Kenneth
  • Nguyen, Linda
  • Mehdipour, Ava
  • Wiley, Elise
  • Saunders, Stephanie
  • Moncion, Kevin
  • Reid, Julie
  • Farley, Christopher
  • Bakaa, Nora
  • D'Amore, Cassandra
  • Kumurenzi, Anne
  • Lu, Ze
  • Diaz, Laura Garcia
  • Ilicic, Ana Maria
  • Knobl, Erin
  • Van Damme, Jill
  • Beauchamp, Marla
  • Macedo, Luciana
  • Vrkljan, Brenda
  • Carlesso, Lisa
  • Letts, Lori
  • Kho, Michelle
  • Moll, Sandra
  • Richardson, Julie

publication date

  • October 2021