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BMC Health Services Research






298 10 pp.)


Background: Specialized Institution-Based Rehabilitation (SIBR) is the cornerstone of care and treatment for individuals with spinal cord injury, but most people with chronic spinal cord injury (CSCI) living in China have no SIBR experience after acute care hospital discharge. In 2009, an SIBR facility was set up in Shanghai (China) to fill this important gap in care. The purpose of the study was to evaluate the effectiveness of an integrated rehabilitation training program among individuals with CSCI living in Shanghai.

Methods: A within-subject pre-posttest design was used to evaluate the SIBR. The sample included 455 individuals ≥1 year post-SCI, who were older than 18 years of age and were enrolled in a rehabilitation center in Shanghai, China, between 2013 and 2019. The data included individuals’ sociodemographic and injury characteristics, and twenty-three indicators were used as outcome measurements to evaluate basic life skills and their applications in family and social life. Multivariate linear regression was conducted to determine which factors might have influenced the effectiveness of the SIBR.

Results: All basic life skills and their applications in family and social life were improved, but with variations across socio-demographics. Female individuals with CSCI had better outcomes in basic life skills than did males. In terms of basic life skills and their applications in family and social life, individuals with a low level (thoracic or lumbosacral) of injury achieved more significant functional gains than those with a higher level (cervical). The baseline score was also a relevant factor in functional outcome.

Conclusions: Even for individuals with a long SCI history, SIBR training can improve basic life skills and the applications of those skills in family and social life settings.


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Original Publication Citation

Chang, F., Zhang, Q., Xie, H., Yang, Y., Sun, M., Wu, A., ... & Lu, J. (2020). Effects of a rehabilitation program for individuals with chronic spinal cord injury in Shanghai, China. BMC Health Services Research, 20(1), 298. doi: 10.1186/s12913-020-05181-x