Dr David Good emphasised that in order to create short-term solutions for creating good services for neuro rehabilitation, it is necessary to create home based care centres.
When asked about the global scenario in the field of neuro rehabiliation, he said, “Neuro rehabilitation is fairly well developed in some countries, but in many countries it is not. The problem is more severe in countries that are developing. The number of strokes is rising and brain injuries are very high, mostly due to car crashes and other road accidents. People who go through such accidents may have problems throughout their life. So the sooner we start to gain access, the better the rehabilitation program can be, and the issue of access to rehabilitation is then resolved. You need to train more professionals, which takes many years. You need to have more occupational therapists, more doctors that can treat people for neurological problems.”
He also gave short-term solutions to ensure that neuro rehabiliation reaches to even the remotest part of the world. While giving short-term solutions he said, “This will be the strategy for long-term, but for short term, you will have to plan different strategies. You will then have to go into home of affected patients. There is something that you can do with the families, you can train them. This is a good option that can be implemented with home rehabilitation. Studies suggest that there is a better outcome with home based rehabilitation.”
He added, “The other option can be using technologies like video call. The therapist cannot touch the patient, but they can instruct them. While training the patient, if they are doing the right thing this will be beneficial. Also, this is cost effective, so we can use it on smartphones. This is the second way to bring rehabilitation to people in the shorter course. We should do this fast, before the problem gets worse, as the number of stroke patients is increasing.”
When asked about the strategy that the WFNR is planning to do to ensure that neuro rehabilitation reaches to all in need, he said, “Another thing that WFNR is planning to do encourage training programs in developing countries to have a trained population working for rehabilitation. We have a dedicated faculty for which travels even to remote areas. This is one of our major roles.”
When there are technologies like robotic one, which are increasing the treatment cost for the rehab, he mentioned about the cost effective and affordable solutions. “Education is probably important. People should be aware about neuro rehabilitation. For this, at times the government can be of help in providing the information, while at times private agencies can help in providing information. Home rehabilitation is a low cost way to do that. A professor from USA did a study in which he taught the people just to walk faster for the people with strokes and they actually did better. This is an example of low cost initiative,” he added.
When asked about how he measures the success of this conference, he said, “It is an excellent way in which they have arranged the conference. Dr Nirmal Surya has taken some extra efforts. There are many students here who are learning things. People are coming in to show their work and walking in to learn many more things, that is the success. It is for the first time that this is happening in Southeast Asia and people across the world will have an opportunity to learn.”