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- ItemAdvancing play participation for all: The challenge of addressing play diversity and inclusion in community parks and playgrounds(SAGE Publications, 2019-12-05) Lynch, Helen; Moore, Alice; Edwards, Claire; Horgan, Linda; National Disability Authority, IrelandIntroduction: Outdoor parks and playgrounds are important sites of social inclusion in many urban communities. However, these playspaces are often inaccessible and unusable for many children with disabilities. This paper presents findings from a case study of one urban municipality in Ireland. The study aimed to understand play participation in five local playgrounds by exploring the perspectives of play providers and families with diverse abilities, through the lens of universal design. Methods: Multiple qualitative methods were used, including playground audits, walk-and-talk observations, and semi-structured interviews. Four play providers, 12 children, and 10 adult users took part. Inductive analysis was conducted to understand the usability and accessibility of playgrounds from a universal design perspective. Findings: These playgrounds provided high play value for younger children, but low play value for older children and those with disabilities, due to lack of accessibility or usability. While local authorities aimed to provide inclusive playgrounds, they lacked knowledge on universal design for playspaces. Conclusion: Children with disabilities continue to experience exclusion in community playspaces, despite a commitment to inclusion in local authorities. Play providers need support to tailor principles of universal design to playground design. Occupational therapists are ideally situated to collaborate with local authorities on universal design for enhancing children's play participation in community settings.
- ItemAn affordance perspective on infant play in home settings: a 'just-right environment'(Barnardos, 2015-09) Lynch, Helen; Hayes, NóirínChildren learn to be in the world through doing: typically in the form of play, incorporating social connection and interactions. However, not all play is social and not all learning involves people: the physical environment is an essential element that is often taken for granted and under-valued in this whole process. The physical environment is more than just a setting for social play – it also influences play significantly and, therefore, needs to be considered as a core factor in determining good practice in play provision. Few studies have focused on the role of the physical environment in influencing play and learning in early childhood care and education (ECCE) settings and even fewer in home settings. Learning environments have been identified as priority for researching infants’ lives from the National Children’s Strategy and from the knowledge that environments have been a relatively under-explored aspect in early childhood research (CECDE, 2007). Curricular and quality frameworks such as Aistear (National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, 2009) and Síolta (CECDE, 2006) have been developed for the early childhood sector. However, while these are intended to target early childhood learning, it is difficult to ascertain to what extent these guidelines can influence home settings. Furthermore, although home learning environments have been the focus of UK research (e.g. Melhuish, 2010; Melhuish, Phan, Sylva, Siraj-Blatchford, & Taggart, 2008) this is an emergent area of concern in Ireland. Home settings in early childhood contexts include the child’s own home, and other homes where the child may be minded. In Ireland’s national longitudinal study Growing Up in Ireland, statistics show that 73% of families organise informal childcare for their preschool-aged children with relatives or non-relatives in their homes, rather than in centre-based settings (McGinnity, Murray & McNally, 2013). Home settings, consequently, are the primary context for early childhood learning and of significant importance for research. In 2007, the Centre for Early Childhood Care and Education (CECDE) Ireland issued a national call for research to be conducted on learning environments of children in early childhood. It was through this opportunity that my own research journey began. My interest in home settings has come from my background as a children’s occupational therapist. When children fail to thrive, and have struggles to develop, the occupational therapist’s job is to determine the effects on their well-being and development, and the impact on their daily lives. Through evaluating self-regulation, sensory, motor and perceptual development, assessing activity and participation, and task-environment analysis, occupation therapists work to maximise the fit between the infant and the environment to best support learning and development. This requires a close connection with the infant’s family and home setting to determine most accurately, the range and choices of tasks within the environment. For example, for families living in a first-floor apartment with no garden, the potential for the child to learn to ride a bike may be more limited than a family living in a rural setting with a lot of open space around the house. So it becomes an issue of affordances, In addition, knowing about the family matters – it is through the shared family environment that children are enabled to play and learn. This includes family routines, habits, values, attitudes and play activities and preferences. Knowing about the home setting is therefore a vital consideration for effective practice.
- ItemAgeism and sexuality(Springer International Publishing AG., 2018) Gewirtz-Meydan, Ateret; Hafford-Letchfield, Trish; Benyamini, Yael; Phelan, Amanda; Jackson, Jeanne; Ayalon, Liat; Ayalon, Liat; Tesch-Römer, ClemensSexuality remains important throughout a person’s life, but sexual behavior does not receive the same levels of acceptance at all ages. Older people are challenged by ageist attitudes and perceptions that hinder their sexual expression. They are stereotyped as non-sexual beings who should not, cannot, and do not want to have sexual relationships. Expressing sexuality or engaging in sexual activity in later life is considered by many in society as immoral or perverted. False expectations for older people also stem from ideals of beauty, centralization of the biomedical perspective on sexuality of older adults, and the association of sex with reproduction. Unfortunately, older people internalize many ageist attitudes towards sexuality in later life and become less interested in sex and less sexually active. The following chapter explores attitudes towards sexuality in later life among the media, young people, older people themselves, and care providers. In order to enable older people to express their sexuality and sexual identity freely and fully, awareness of ageist perceptions must be raised and defeated.
- ItemCan universal design support outdoor play, social participation, and inclusion in public playgrounds? A scoping review(Taylor & Francis, 2020-12-10) Moore, Alice; Lynch, Helen; Boyle, Bryan; Irish Research CouncilPurpose: To synthesize evidence regarding the physical design features and non-physical aspects of public playgrounds that facilitate/hinder outdoor play, social participation, and inclusion; identify design recommendations; and explore the current discourses and concepts around designing for outdoor play, social participation, and inclusion in public playgrounds in the context of Universal Design (UD). Methods: Published studies addressing public playgrounds, inclusion, and design, were identified via a systematic search of eleven databases from health, science, education, and humanities. Results: Fifteen documents met the inclusion criteria. Three main themes were identified concerning physical design features and non-physical aspects of public playgrounds that facilitate/hinder outdoor play, social participation, and inclusion, with associated design recommendations. Although UD is recognized to have the potential to support the design of public playgrounds, no studies examined UD solutions for playgrounds or tested them for effectiveness. Conclusion: We cannot yet determine whether UD can support outdoor play, social participation, and inclusion in public playgrounds. Research to date has mostly focused on understanding usersâ perspectives; future research should continue to be informed by diverse usersâ perspectives to address gaps in knowledge concerning childrenâ s voice from migrants, lower socioeconomic communities, and intergenerational users with disabilities alongside researching design solutions for play. Implications for rehabilitation: Children, particularly children with disabilities and their families, continue to experience marginalization and exclusion in public playgrounds, despite a commitment to inclusion in international treaties. Universal design is recognized to have the potential to support the design of public playgrounds, however, the evidence is currently very sparse. While accessibility is an important consideration for playground design, it does not ensure that play occupations can take place. Extending knowledge on universal design as it applies explicitly to playgrounds and play occupation requires multi- and trans-disciplinary collaboration that includes a play-centered perspective.
- ItemConsultations on driving in people with cognitive impairment in primary care: A scoping review of the evidence(PLoS, 2018-10-15) Sinnott, Carol; Foley, Tony; Forsyth, Justin; McLoughlin, Kathleen; Horgan, Linda; Bradley, Colin P.; Road Safety Authority Ireland; National Institute for Health Research; School for Primary Care Research (SPCR)Objectives: To review the empirical evidence on approaches used by Primary Care Physicians (PCPs) in fitness to drive (FtD) consultations with people living with cognitive impairment. Design: Scoping review of empirical literature focused on primary studies of any design. Setting: Primary care practice. Participants: PCPs or their equivalent and/ or individuals with cognitive impairment across the spectrum of mild cognitive impairment to dementia. Measurements: Systematic search of Medline, Cinahl, PsychINFO, Academic Search Complete, Psychological and Behavioural Sciences Collection, SocIndex and Social Sciences FT were conducted. Records screened by two reviewers against agreed inclusion criteria. Mixed studies (qualitative and quantitative) were synthesized within overarching themes. Results: Eighteen studies met our inclusion criteria. Synthesized data showed PCPs have mixed feelings on the appropriateness of their role in FtD assessments, with many feeling particularly uncomfortable and lacking confidence in the context of possible cognitive impairment. Reasons include lack of familiarity with legal requirements and local resources; fear of damaging the doctor-patient relationship; and impact on the patient’s quality of life. Patients voiced their desire to maintain agency in planning their driving cessation. Studies evaluating pragmatic educational programmes suggest these can improve physician confidence in FtD consultations. Conclusion: The increasing number of older people affected by cognitive impairment, for whom driving may be a concern, has implications for primary care practice. Addressing the reasons for PCPs lack of comfort in dealing with this issue is essential in order for them to better engage in, collaborative discussion with patients on plans and preferences for driving cessation
- ItemCreating a community of praxis: integrating global citizenship and development education across campus at University College Cork(UCL Press, 2022-12-13) Cotter, Gertrude; Bonenfant, Yvon; Butler, Jenny; Caulfield, Marian; Doyle Prestwich, Barbara; Griffin, Rosarii; Khabbar, Sanaa; Mishra, Nita; Hally, Ruth; Murphy, Margaret; Murphy, Orla; O'Sullivan, Maeve; Phelan, Martha; Reidy, Darren; Schneider, Julia C.; Isaloo, Amin Sharifi; Turner, Brian; Usher, Ruth; Williamson Sinalo, Caroline; Irish AidThe Praxis Project, established at University College Cork (UCC), Ireland, in 2018, seeks to assess possible models of best practice with regard to the integration of global citizenship and development education (GCDE) into a cross-disciplinary, cross-campus, interwoven set of subject area pedagogies, policies and practices. This study – the first part of an eventual three-part framework – asserts that the themes, theories, values, skills, approaches and methodologies relevant to transformative pedagogical work are best underpinned by ongoing staff dialogue in order to build communities of support around such systemic pedagogical change. This article is based on a collaborative study with the first cohort of UCC staff (2020–1), which demonstrates many ways in which staff and students realised that smaller actions and carefully directed attention to specific issues opened doors to transformative thinking and action in surprising ways. From this viewpoint, the striking need emerged for taking a strategic approach to how GCDE is, and should be, integrated into learning across subject areas.
- ItemDesigning for inclusion in public playgrounds: a scoping review of definitions, and utilization of universal design(Taylor & Francis, 2022-02-09) Moore, Alice; Boyle, Bryan; Lynch, Helen; Irish Research CouncilPurpose: Public playgrounds afford children and families important opportunities for outdoor play, social participation, and inclusion. Unfortunately, many children and families experience barriers to accessing, using, and being included in public playgrounds. Consequently, Universal Design (UD) is promoted for providing conceptual guidance for designing for inclusion in public playgrounds. However, a lack of research evidence means researchers have engaged in the ongoing interpretation of the UD concept and related non-discriminatory planning and design concepts. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine how UD, and related concepts, are used in peer-reviewed articles concerning public playgrounds. Materials and methods: A scoping review was conducted in November 2019, which identified 15 peer-reviewed articles that met the inclusion criteria. Results: Analysis revealed that the terms UD, inclusive design, accessibility, and usability are all being used to describe non-discriminatory planning and design concepts arbitrarily and without regard for higher or lower order concepts. Two broad interpretations were evident: (a) UD is synonymous with accessibility for some, and (b) UD is a higher-order concept that goes beyond accessibility for others. Nevertheless, findings highlight the utility of UD in underpinning the design of public playgrounds in many developed countries; however, the concept requires further clarity and specificity as it pertains to playground design and more pertinently inclusion in outdoor play. Conclusions: We argue for further conceptual refinement to consolidate the importance and future application of UD for Play (UDP) in the design of public playgrounds that promote outdoor play, social participation, and inclusion. Implications for rehabilitation: Most peer-reviewed journal articles reviewed fail to define what is meant by the term Universal Design. Of those that do provide a definition, the outcome of inclusion in play, or the application of Universal Design to enable play in public playgrounds was unclear. Research to date has mostly focused on related concepts, including accessibility and usability, with less emphasis on Universal Design. Recommend a tailored perspective of Universal Design for Play (UDP)
- ItemDesigning inclusive playgrounds in Switzerland: why is it so complex?(Taylor & Francis, 2022-05-22) Wenger, Ines; Prellwitz, M.; Lundström, U.; Lynch, Helen; Schulze, C.; Horizon 2020; Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen (SRF); Béatrice Ederer-Weber StiftungPlaygrounds designed with the intention to be inclusive are one approach to creating equal opportunities for all children, including those with disabilities, in terms of their right to play. However, when building inclusive playgrounds, the focus is often limited to the physical environment. Yet, studies investigating children’s play in inclusive playgrounds have shown that other aspects of inclusion, such as social inclusion, are equally as important as the physical environment. Nevertheless, there is a lack of knowledge about how inclusion is considered in the design of inclusive playgrounds. Therefore, this study aimed to explore the design and use of inclusive playgrounds among people involved in the provision of inclusive playgrounds and advocates of children with disabilities from a Swiss context. Four focus groups were conducted with 26 participants involved in providing inclusive playgrounds or having a professional or personal relationship with children with disabilities. Results revealed no uniform understanding of inclusive playgrounds. Barriers to inclusive playground provision included negative attitudes, lack of knowledge about inclusion and the absence of policies for inclusion. Through the focus group discussions, it was proposed that a community network is needed, to bring together children with disabilities and their families with playground providers when designing inclusive playgrounds. In this context, user involvement can inform the design of playgrounds and support the understanding of the needs of people with disabilities in playgrounds, among other things. To enhance inclusion for children with disabilities on inclusive playgrounds, design approaches that consider social inclusion, like Universal Design, are proposed.
- ItemDesigning public playgrounds for inclusion: a scoping review of grey literature guidelines for Universal Design(Taylor & Francis, 2022-05-10) Moore, Alice; Boyle, Bryan; Lynch, Helen; Irish Research CouncilUniversal Design (UD) is promoted internationally for the design of public playgrounds that support outdoor play, social participation, and inclusion. Despite this international recognition of UD, there is a lack of research evidence concerning the applicability of UD for playground design. Instead, municipalities need to rely on best practice guidelines to inform the design of public playgrounds for inclusion. Internationally, numerous grey literature guidelines have been produced for designing public playgrounds for inclusion, resulting in a lack of consensus on core principles for applying UD. Thus, this scoping review study aimed to synthesise findings from a review of international grey literature guidelines to strengthen the knowledgebase for designing public playgrounds for inclusion. Three themes were identified that characterise core considerations for good design: (1) design approaches, (2) design principles and (3) design recommendations. Although UD is recognised as having potential to support the design of public playgrounds, inconsistent design approaches, principles, and recommendations, were communicated within these guideline documents. Still, the core concept of inclusion underpinned all guideline documents and a tailored application of UD dominated. Consequently, to fully realise the design of public playgrounds for inclusion, UD may need to be tailored for play; however, further research is required.
- ItemElectronic aids to daily living: be able to do what you want(Informa Healthcare, 2011-05) Verdonck, Michèle Claire; Chard, Gill; Nolan, Maeve; Health Research BoardPurpose. This study explores the experiences of Irish people with high cervical spinal cord injuries living with electronic aids to daily living (EADL) and the meaning attributed to such systems in the context of participation in everyday life. Method. Qualitative methodology using a phenomenological approach was used to explore the phenomenon of living with EADL. Data were collected using four focus groups of users and nonusers of EADL (n = 15). All participants had high cervical spinal cord injuries (C3-5). Groups were video recorded, transcribed verbatim and analysed using descriptive phenomenological analysis. Findings. Findings revealed key elements of the meaning of living with EADL. Two key themes, time alone and changed relationships are described. These contribute to the super ordinate theme of autonomy. Findings suggest that participants perceived improvements in both anticipated and actual lived experiences with EADL. Themes are interrelated and together represent a summary of the experience of living with environmental controls. The themes described are similar to those found in other spinal injury studies relating to quality of life. Conclusions. Findings highlight differences in life experiences for those with and without EADL and provides motivation to address this difference. Such insights are valuable for both users and providers of EADL.
- ItemEnvironmental qualities that enhance outdoor play in community playgrounds from the perspective of children with and without disabilities: A scoping review(MDPI, 2023-01-18) Morgenthaler, Thomas; Schulze, Christina; Pentland, Duncan; Lynch, Helen; Horizon 2020For children, playgrounds are important environments. However, children’s perspectives are often not acknowledged in playground provision, design, and evaluation. This scoping review aimed to summarize the users’ (children with and without disabilities) perspectives on environmental qualities that enhance their play experiences in community playgrounds. Published peer-reviewed studies were systematically searched in seven databases from disciplines of architecture, education, health, and social sciences; 2905 studies were screened, and the last search was performed in January 2023. Included studies (N = 51) were charted, and a qualitative content analysis was conducted. Five themes were formed which provided insights into how both physical and social environmental qualities combined provide for maximum play value in outdoor play experiences. These multifaceted play experiences included the desire for fun, challenge, and intense play, the wish to self-direct play, and the value of playing alone as well as with known people and animals. Fundamentally, children wished for playgrounds to be children’s places that were welcoming, safe, and aesthetically pleasing. The results are discussed in respect to social, physical, and atmospheric environmental affordances and the adult’s role in playground provision. This scoping review represents the valuable insights of children regardless of abilities and informs about how to maximise outdoor play experiences for all children.
- ItemEvidence for implementing tiered approaches in elementary schools in school-based occupational therapy: a scoping review(American Occupational Therapy Association, 2023) Lynch, Helen; Moore, Alice; O'Connor, Deirdre; Boyle, BryanImportance: Internationally, it is suggested that school-based occupational therapy (SBOT) has an important role in supporting inclusion in educational settings. In SBOT, multitiered service delivery models are identified as a way forward to maximize school inclusion. Therefore, identifying evidence for the implementation of tiered interventions in SBOT is vital. Objective: To identify and map evidence in the occupational therapy literature relating to SBOT interventions delivered in elementary schools for all children, for those at risk, and for those with identified diagnoses. Data Sources: Peer-reviewed literature published in 14 occupational therapy journals between 1990 and 2020, indexed in the EBSCOhost database. Study Selection and Data Collection: Included studies were those within the scope of SBOT that reported on school occupations and focused on elementary school–age children (excluding kindergarteners or preschoolers). Findings: Forty studies met the criteria. Individual-tier intervention studies (n = 22) primarily reported direct interventions with children at risk or with identified diagnoses (Tier 2 or Tier 3), focusing mostly on remedial approaches. None adopted a whole-school approach. Despite handwriting and self-regulation being dominant areas of concern, these studies were not explicitly related to inclusion outcomes. Evidence for implementing multitiered models primarily used indirect, collaborative consultation, embedded in the school context (n = 18). These studies identified positive school staff and child outcomes when collaboration was timely, consistent, and authentic. Conclusions and Relevance: More rigorous individual-tier intervention studies are required to inform the design and implementation of multitiered interventions in SBOT and to support participation and inclusion in schools. What This Article Adds: This scoping review provides evidence to support occupational therapists’ professional reasoning in developing evidence-based, contextual, educationally relevant multitiered models of intervention in SBOT.
- ItemExploring the participation of children with Down Syndrome in Handwriting Without Tears(Taylor & Francis (Routledge), 2017) Patton, Sandra; Hutton, Eve; Froebel College of Education; Down Syndrome IrelandChildren with Down Syndrome typically experience difficulties with attention to task and lack motivation when learning to write. This article provides an evaluation of the HWT (Handwriting Without Tears) method applied as an intervention to promote handwriting among children with Down Syndrome attending mainstream school in the Republic of Ireland. In the absence of standardized measures, a purpose-designed HWT group task participation scale and pre- and postintervention teacher/parent questionnaire were developed by the first author and used to investigate the participation of 40 children with Down Syndrome in HWT activities. Positive changes in participation in HWT activities were recorded in group data and in teacher/parent reports. Tentative findings suggest that hands-on multisensory learning approaches such as HWT may encourage children with Down Syndrome to participate in activities that promote handwriting skills. Further research and the development of robust measures to evaluate handwriting intervention for this population of children is required.
- ItemFamily life and autistic children with sensory processing differences: A qualitative evidence synthesis of occupational participation(Frontiers Media S.A., 2022-10-20) Daly, Gina; Jackson, Jeanne; Lynch, Helen; Sensory Integration Network Limited, UK and IrelandAutistic children with sensory processing differences successfully navigate and engage in meaningful family daily occupations within home and community environments through the support of their family. To date however, much of the research on autistic children with sensory processing differences, has primarily been deficit focused, while much of the caregiver research has focused on issues of distress, burden, effort, and emotional trauma in coping with their child's diagnosis. This study aimed to conduct a qualitative evidence synthesis, using a meta-ethnographic approach to explore the gap identified in understanding successful occupational experiences of family participation and daily family routines when supporting an autistic child with sensory processing differences and to offer an alternative strengths-based perspective. Inclusion criteria were studies which were peer-reviewed qualitative design, published from 2000 to 2021, and that concerned parents/caregivers' perspectives of family occupations of children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. Studies were electronically searched in eight databases from October to December 2021 and 23 studies were identified which met the inclusion criteria. Noblit and Hare's seven step approach for conducting analysis in meta-ethnography was used, and three themes identified: (1) sensory processing differences in daily life, (2) what is hard about hard, and (3) orchestrating family life. Results identified the centrality of sensory experiences in understanding family life. Living with unpredictability while orchestrating certainty through routines was core to successful participation. This review provides insights into how parents negotiate the complexities of constructing family life when living with an autistic child. The results can inform the design of future interventions that specifically address the relationship between meaningful participation in family occupations and daily routines and sensory processing in autistic children.
- ItemFraught with frights or full of fun: perspectives of risky play among six-to-eight-year olds(Taylor & Francis, 2021-08-20) Hinchion, Sarah; McAuliffe, Ellen; Lynch, Helen; Horizon 2020; H2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie ActionsOutdoor play provides children with unique opportunities to explore and expand their worlds, and to incorporate risk and challenge into play events. However, international research indicates that children are being exposed to fewer opportunities to engage in outdoor, risky play, while few studies have explored risky play among children aged six-to-eight years in differing cultural contexts. This qualitative study explored children’s perspectives and experiences of outdoor risky play in a rural Irish town. Ten children took part in focus groups, drawings, photography, a child-led tour of the local community and a map-making session. Three themes emerged; Risky play and me, my power to play and ‘sometimes it is kind of worth it!’. Findings suggest that risky play categories evolve as children age, and some new categories surfaced, including risky construction and breaking the rules. Further exploration of risky play is warranted to ascertain its characteristics more fully among this age group.
- ItemHelp-seeking behaviors and mental well-being of first year undergraduate university students(Elsevier Inc., 2016-12-30) Goodwin, John; Behan, Laura; Kelly, Peter; McCarthy, Karen; Horgan, Aine M.University students demonstrate poor help-seeking behaviors for their mental health, despite often reporting low levels of mental well-being. The aims of this study were to examine the help-seeking intentions and experiences of first year university students in terms of their mental well-being, and to explore these students’ views on formal (e.g. psychiatrists) and informal (e.g. friends) help-seeking. Students from a university in the Republic of Ireland (n=220) completed an online questionnaire which focused on mental well-being and help-seeking behaviors. Almost a third of students had sought help from a mental health professional. Very few students reported availing of university/online supports. Informal sources of help were more popular than formal sources, and those who would avail and had availed of informal sources demonstrated higher well-being scores. Counselors were the source of professional help most widely used. General practitioners, chaplains, social workers, and family therapists were rated the most helpful. Those with low/average well-being scores were less likely to seek help than those with higher scores. Findings indicate the importance of enhancing public knowledge of mental health issues, and for further examination of students’ knowledge of help-seeking resources in order to improve the help-seeking behaviors and mental well-being of this population group.
- ItemIrish occupational therapists' views of electronic assistive technology(College of Occupational Therapists, 2011-04) Verdonck, Michèle Claire; McCormack, Cathy; Chard, Gill; Health Research BoardIntroduction: Electronic assistive technology (EAT) includes computers, environmental control systems and information technology systems and is widely considered to be an important part of present-day life. Method: Fifty-six Irish community occupational therapists completed a questionnaire on EAT. All surveyed were able to identify the benefits of EAT. Results: While respondents reported that they should be able to assess for and prescribe EATs, only a third (19) were able to do so, and half (28) had not been able to do so in the past. Community occupational therapists identified themselves as havinga role in a multidisciplinary team to assess for and prescribe EAT. Conclusion: Results suggest that it is important for occupational therapists to have up-to-date knowledge and training in assistive and computer technologies in order to respond to the occupational needs of clients.
- ItemKinesiology taping for breast lymphoedema after breast cancer treatment: A feasibility randomised controlled tria(IOS Press, 2018-07-17) Collins, Siobhán; Bradley, Nora; Fitzgibbon, Sarah; McVeigh, Joseph G.PURPOSE: The primary aim of this study was to determine the feasibility of conducting a randomised controlled trial (RCT) to evaluate the effectiveness of kinesiology tape (KT) and usual care versus usual care alone in the treatment of breast lymphoedema (BLE). METHODS: Fourteen participants with BLE were randomly assigned to either the KT and usual care group or usual care alone group. Both groups received three sessions of manual lymphatic drainage (MLD) once per week for three weeks, with the KT group additionally wearing the KT for two seven-day periods in between MLD sessions. Safety and acceptability of the KT were assessed by recording adverse events, skin changes and compliance with KT. Outcomes included were: ease of recruitment, attrition and acceptability of KT, percentage breast tissue water, patient-reported breast heaviness/fullness, breast discomfort and breast redness. RESULTS: Recruitment for this study was an average of 2.8 participants per month. There were no dropouts from either group. No adverse events or major skin side effects were recorded in either group. Minor skin redness was the most common dermal change (n = 5). Compliance with KT was excellent. Percentage tissue water in the worst affected breast quadrant reduced, on average, by 15.14% and 10.43% in both the KT group and the usual care group respectively. CONCLUSION: This feasibility RCT into the use of KT in BLE has shown that recruitment to a larger scale RCT is feasible. It has been demonstrated that KT is a safe and acceptable intervention with no adverse events and minor dermal changes. A large, multi-centred RCT is now necessary to accurately assess the effect of KT in BLE.
- ItemMainstream technology as an occupational therapy tool: technophobe or technogeek?(College of Occupational Therapists, 2008-06-01) Verdonck, Michèle Claire; Ryan, Susan E.; Health Research BoardOccupational therapists need to embrace the use of mainstream technology in their quest to ensure that therapy remains current and meaningful to their clients. Technology can be useful to improve both functional independence and occupational performance. This opinion piece introduces how occupational therapists can apply mainstream technologies, including information and communication technologies such as the internet, computer software, portable devices and computer games, in their everyday interventions.
- ItemA national study of playground professionals universal design implementation practices(Routledge - Taylor & Francis Group, 2022-04-06) Moore, Alice; Lynch, Helen; Boyle, Bryan; Irish Research CouncilGlobally, Universal Design (UD) is promoted as an evidence-informed approach for planning and designing accessible and inclusive public playgrounds, which are valuable sites for outdoor play in child-friendly cities. However, it remains unclear the extent to which UD has been implemented in public playgrounds. The purpose of this study was to explore the extent to which UD is implemented, from the perspectives of playground professionals in the Republic of Ireland. A descriptive, cross-sectional online survey was used to gather data. Data analysis revealed that playground professionals recognise the importance of UD for planning, designing, and providing public playgrounds for inclusion, and implement UD in various ways. Still, a lack of knowledge and good practice guides for embedding UD, constitute significant barriers. Numerous opportunities, initiatives and training prospects were identified to better support the implementation of UD. Moreover, further research with ‘professional experts’ and ‘user-experts’ is required to strengthen socio-spatial inclusion.