We Understand Your Challenges
Hospital systems internationally are facing increased pressure to deliver value-based care in an environment of fiscal challenges. Increasingly administrators and clinicians are looking for scalable, outpatient care that can support acute care recovery for brain injury.
- Providing a care pathway for brain injury patients, including chronic brain injury patients: Many hospitals, healthcare systems, and non-profits provide excellent support for acute services but lack a clear referral process to an integrated, holistic, evidence-based outpatient program for individuals with ABI and TBI. The lack of effective outpatient care adds to increased readmissions and other acute needs, further driving costs.
- Balancing financial sustainability with value-based care: Internationally, hospitals are faced with the primary challenge of delivering high quality care, in an environment of fiscal pressures. For brain injury patients, hospital providers understand the importance of providing access to multidisciplinary outpatient care for hospitals but have limited opportunities of providing care in a fiscally sustainable way.
- Tracking health outcomes: Tracking health outcomes for each patient currently adds significant administrative workload to clinicians, administrators and other care providers, resulting in reduced time working with patients and focusing on their care. Typically, these health outcomes are reported with significant lags, limiting the ability for clinicians to react to the outcomes proactively.
ABI Wellness licenses a unique and interdisciplinary four-pillar program that focuses on changing the brain to improve higher order cognitive and related behavioural functions during the post-acute phase of recovery. These four pillars – higher order cognitive rehabilitation, aerobic exercise, mindfulness and interdisciplinary health tracking – are recommended for individuals, age eight to end of life, experiencing acquired brain injuries as it emphasizes cognitive, physical and emotional healing.
Researchers at the University of British Columbia’s Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health have studied the impact of our program, using patients that live with traumatic brain injuries. The preliminary results revealed that the brain has an incredible capacity to change, adapt and grow through interdisciplinary programs that offer intervention and stimulation of existing cognitive functions.
The Four Pillars of ABI Wellness
Using the world-renowned BrainExTM program that focuses on higher order cognitive rehabilitation, ABI Wellness targets four areas of the brain that are responsible for executive functioning. Four exercises – Symbol Relations, Symbol Thinking, Nonverbal Thinking and Predicative Speech – help to restore a patient’s ability to organize, plan and set goals, in addition to building cognitive capacities in verbal memory, verbal retrieval, reasoning and enhancing overall self-awareness.
Research has proven that exercise and physical activity can regulate mood and anxiety in patients with brain injuries, so aerobic exercise plays a vital role in enhancing cognitive improvement. Aerobic exercise, as an integral part of ABI Wellness’s program, prepares the brain for more effective higher order cognitive rehabilitation, and studies have shown that aerobic exercise alone has been found to improve mood and executive functioning for patients with brain injuries.
Did you know that fatigue is often one of the longest-lasting symptoms of brain injury? Fatigue can impact an individual’s ability to function in daily life, but mindfulness has proven to reduce depressive symptoms, overall stress and fatigue in patients with traumatic brain injury. In addition to depressive symptoms, mindfulness can also decrease pain intensity and increase energy levels. Fully understanding all the benefits of mindfulness, ABI Wellness’s program includes 10-15 minutes of guided meditation each day.
Interdisciplinary Health Tracking
Utilizing automated tools to deliver up-to-the-minute patient activity and satisfactory tracking, ABI Wellness’s focus is on interdisciplinary health through quality of life tracking, which allows facilitators to monitor changes in patients’ daily lives throughout treatment. This pillar includes bi-weekly, one-on-one clinical counselling sessions for each patient.
SPACER WIDGET FOR LAYOUT
Why ABI Wellness? Benefits to Hospitals
- Research-focused, integrated program serving major brain injury treatment areas: ABI works closely with researchers at the UBC Faculty of Medicine on relevant research investigating the best models of care. The ABI program covers the key areas proven to improve brain function: cognitive training for executive functions, physical conditioning and mindfulness. The ABI program has already worked closely with the Watson Centre to receive referrals from regional healthcare providers.
- Demonstrable healthcare system savings: Given the scalable nature of the ABI program, this program achieves improved clinician-patient ratios of up to 1:7, while maintaining proactive care tracking and support. This scalability significantly reduces labour costs and can save up to 30%-40% and beyond, compared to current total costs. In addition, ABI provides on-demand reporting on healthcare outcomes, significantly cutting down on administrative reporting requirements.
- On-demand health outcomes tracking: ABI’s scalable technology supports reporting on the key patient activities, thereby significantly improving the ability to track and react proactively to data on patient progress, challenge areas, and areas requiring intervention.
ABI Wellness delivers evidence-based interventions through a state-of-the-art tablet platform. The software is easy to use and all cognitive exercises are completed in combination with professional support. We offer half-day, part-time, symbol relations cognitive enhancement programs, as well as program facilitator training, certification, counselling and speaking engagements.
This program is a comprehensive approach to addressing cognitive deficits through cognitive training, aerobic exercise, mindfulness practice and holistic health tracking.
Based on each client’s learning profile, an individualized program of targeted exercises is designed to address four cognitive areas involved in reasoning, memory, executive functioning, attention and planning.
Half-Day clients must spend a minimum of four 40-minute periods per day on cognitive exercises at the program site, with a minimum aggregate of three hours and 20 minutes per cognitive exercise each week (comprising of one 40-minute period per day for five days a week).
Half-day clients undergo updated assessments after six months for the cognitive areas addressed in that period.
The half-day program is the most comprehensive way to address cognitive deficits following a brain injury. But some individuals can’t make that commitment.
Clients in the part-time program address two cognitive areas. Each client must spend a minimum of two 40-minute periods per day on cognitive exercises at the program site, with a minimum aggregate of three hours and 20 minutes per cognitive exercise each week (comprising of two 40-minute periods per day for five days a week).
It is recommended that clients participate in a 30-minute period of aerobic exercise the day before cognitive training.
Symbol Relations Cognitive Enhancement Program
This program provides cognitive enhancement to participants in the symbol relations cognitive function and specifically benefits individuals with acquired brain injury.
The symbol relations cognitive function is involved in processing concepts – including understanding what we read and hear, logical reasoning, seeing connections between ideas, cause and effect processing and mathematical reasoning.
Clients in the symbol relations cognitive enhancement program must spend a minimum of four to six hours per week on the cognitive exercise at the program site.
An innovative and evidenced-based approach that will revolutionize the assessment and treatment process for clients who suffer from chronic brain injuries.
[ABI Wellness] provides Occupational Therapists (OTs) with a structured yet tailored approach in the cognitive, physical, and psychosocial areas of the individual, which will enable OTs to better support their clients in making functional gains in their home and community.
– Hélène Thériault, B.Sc. OT; M. Ad. Ed.; Clinical Instructor, Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, UBC, Associate Certified Coach (ACC)
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