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Title: The efficacy of peer support in stroke rehabilitation
Author: Stamatakis, Christopher
Awarding Body: Cardiff University
Current Institution: Cardiff University
Date of Award: 2015
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Aims: Peer support has been incorporated into clinical and national stroke guidelines as an important component of community rehabilitation, yet there is a paucity of research in this area. This study aimed to evaluate the efficacy of a community-based stroke peer support intervention for survivors and carers. Design: Stroke survivors and carers (n=47) were randomly assigned to either a five-week peer support group intervention or a waiting-list comparison condition. Mixed multivariate (MANCOVA) and univariate (ANCOVA / ANOVA) analyses were used to compare mean scores over time on a range of self-report measures. Additionally, mediation analysis was used to explore the processes underlying peer support. Method: All participants completed measures of psychological distress (GHQ-30), perceived social support (Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support), quality of life (EQ-5D-3L) and activities of daily living (Barthel Index). Intervention group participants completed a group process questionnaire (TFI-19). Assessments were completed at baseline, post-intervention (five-weeks) and at follow-up (four-weeks). Due to significant differences between the two groups on the Barthel Index at baseline, these scores were added as a covariate in the MANCOVA and follow-up ANCOVAs used in analysis with the outcome variables (i.e. GHQ-30 and EQ-5D-3L). Results: Participants in the peer support intervention group reported decreased psychological distress and increased perceived social support and quality of life over time. These changes were significantly greater when compared to the control group, over the same time period. Perceived social support was found to mediate the relationship between group condition and psychological distress. Conclusions: Peer support can facilitate improvements in psychosocial wellbeing for stroke survivors and carers. Social support was found to be an important mechanism underlying peer support. Theoretical and clinical implications of peer support in stroke are discussed and recommendations for future research are outlined.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BF Psychology ; RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry