More patients helped at Strathclyde University stroke rehab centre 30 March 2023 The pioneering work on stroke rehabilitation at Strathclyde University, supported by Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland, is continuing to grow. The fifth group of 10 patients is now going through the tailored eight-week rehab program, which uses a range of technology to improve movement and cognitive abilities. That means 50 stroke patients so far have benefited from the program and the innovative work led by Dr Andy Kerr, a senior lecturer in biomedical engineering and trained physiotherapist, and his team at the Glasgow institution. CHSS is supporting the rehab project with investment of £160,000 that includes funding for two occupational therapists to assess and work with the patients as they complete the program. A third, part-time occupational therapist has also joined the team on secondment from NHS Lanarkshire. Meanwhile, Dr Kerr’s team are working with CHSS and the NHS on establishing the technology-based exercise program in community settings, such as gyms and leisure centres. The program is based in the university’s Sir Jules Thorn Centre for Co-creation of Rehabilitation Technology. Developing new technology Staff and research students harness current and developing technology to improve rehab outcomes for patients, such as a treadmill with a harness to support those with balance or mobility issues and games with adapted controllers that help to recover dexterity. Stroke patients have found the exercises very helpful. Dr Kerr said: “There’s a lot of exciting things going on. We have been awarded a grant from Innovate UK to develop a digital pulmonary rehabilitation system, and work starts on that project in May. And we also have a new PhD student who is developing a collaborative game that will include a social aspect for users.” Stroke is one of Scotland’s biggest killers and a leading cause of severe disability. Two thirds of stroke survivors will leave hospital with a disability and a third will have to give up work as a result of their stroke. The sort of rehabilitation Dr Kerr and his team are researching, designing and implementing can help patients in their recovery and improve their lives. You can support this work and help more stroke survivors on their recovery journey by donating whatever you can.