Yarning together: Developing a culturally secure rehabilitation approach for Aboriginal Australians after brain injury
To develop an understanding of the perceptions by Aboriginal Australians with acquired communication disorder following brain injury have of rehabilitation services and test the feasibility and acceptability of a culturally tailored model of rehabilitation delivered via one of two models: face to face or using telehealth technology.
Project leader: Associate Professor Natalie Ciccone, Associate Dean (Allied Health), School of Medical and Health Sciences, Edith Cowan University.
Administering organisation: Edith Cowan University
Project timeline: 1 May 2018—1 April 2019
Using a single case, mixed methods design, the study involved 11 Aboriginal participants from the Perth metropolitan area with acquired communication disorders after brain injury. The therapy involved 16 X 1 hour treatment sessions provided twice weekly by a speech pathologist and Aboriginal co-worker incorporating a yarning framework and family involvement. Pre-therapy interviews gathered participants’ thoughts on therapy and their expectations of the therapy. Post-therapy interviews explored the participants’ views of the therapy provided. Therapists were interviewed at study completion to develop a sense of clinical acceptability.
Analysis of the results indicate that it is feasible to provide speech pathology intervention co-jointly with a speech pathologist and Aboriginal co-worker and to implement a yarning framework – a conversation-based approach following Aboriginal discourse structures (broadly based on Bessarab & Ng’andu 2010). The therapy was considered acceptable to participants, and both modes of delivery — face to face and using tele-rehabilitation technology — were also well received. Participants also reported communication improvements across the treatment period