RehabWire Volume 2 Number 8, September 2000

This month’s RehabWire is “new and improved!” Each year, NIDRR funds approximately 75 new projects. Here are some highlights from the class of 2000.

NIDRR Projects: Research in the New Millennium.

Developing a Rehabilitation Service Delivery Model for Minority Farmers with Disabilities, University of Arkansas/Pine Bluff (H133G000192) led by Ari K. Mwachofi, PhD. Delores Watkins, Project Officer.
Abstract: The purpose of this project is to build an effective, participatory and dynamic model of service delivery to minority farmers with disabilities. Such a model requires a thorough understanding of the population's needs, perceptions, disabilities, and the most effective methods of reaching and communicating with them. The main thrust of the project is active participation by minority farmers in research and model building.

Disability Rights and the Independent Living Movement: The Formative Years Nationwide, University of California/Berkeley (H133G000083) led by Charles B. Faulhaber, PhD. Ruth Brannon, Project Officer.
Abstract: The goal of this project is to create a national platform for comprehensive research on the origins and leadership of the independent living and disability rights movement in the United States. An experienced team collects and preserves oral histories and archival records of pivotal leaders and key organizations across the country before they are irretrievably lost.

Disability Law Knowledge Management System: A One-Stop Clearinghouse for Disability Information, Meeting the Challenge, Inc. (H133G000221) led by Robert H. Gattis Jr. and Brenda Williams. Judith Fein, Project Officer.
Abstract: The Disability Law Knowledge Management System (KMS) project develops a comprehensive knowledge dissemination and utilization repository of disability civil rights information in a web-based help desk format. The Disability KMS project expands on the earlier work in two important areas. First, it vastly increases the quantity of information in the knowledge base. Second, it expands the use of the information specialist to the general public.

Rehabilitative Impact of Integrated Spiritual Care on an Inpatient Oncology Unit, (H133F000042) led by Rhoda M. Toperzer. Ellen Blasiotti, Project Officer.
Abstract: The purpose of this study is to investigate the impact of augmented pastoral care hours on an oncology patient care unit. The goal is to improve outcomes as measured by patient perception, rehabilitative outcomes, and health care staff interaction. This is to be a non-denominational/inter-faith intervention for patients from structured and unstructured religious/spiritual backgrounds, and to be culturally sensitive. Significantly improved rehabilitation is the expected global contribution of the pastoral care intervention.

new!!National Rehabilitation Research and Training Center for Children with Disabilities with Special Health Care Needs, Georgetown University (H133B001200) led by Phyllis Magrab, PhD. Roseann Rafferty, Project Officer.

Abstract: This center improves rehabilitation outcomes for children and youth with disabilities with special health care needs by increasing the effectiveness of service systems. The research program targets five areas: (1) access to rehabilitative services with the current context; (2) impact on health services within managed care; (3) promising practices of transition to adult health care in managed care settings; (4) training to address skills needed by professionals in relation to assistive technology; and (5) appropriateness and effectiveness of telerehabilitation in geographically remote areas.

Determining the Effectiveness of a Capacity-Building Program for Individuals with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, DePaul University (H133G000097) led by Renee Taylor, PhD. Dawn Carlson, Project Officer.
Abstract: This project evaluates the efficacy, replicability, and sustainability of peer-based intervention strategies applied to individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) as implemented within a Center for Independent Living (CIL) setting. The predictable outcome is that this community-based intervention improves overall quality of life, functional capacity, illness severity, coping, and service utilization among individuals with CFS. In addition, the study predicts that the intervention serves to increase knowledge and awareness of CFS among CIL staff.
Find out more at:

Independent Living for People with Psychiatric Disabilities: Using Contextual Cues to Remove Environmental Barriers, University of Kansas Medical Center (H133G000152) led by Catana Brown, PhD, OTR. Richard E. Wilson II, EdD, Project Officer.
Abstract: The project examines an intervention that reduces environmental barriers by teaching contextual cues. The grocery store, an exemplar of a complex community-based environment, is the focus in the study and grocery shopping is the designated skill. The hypotheses test the effectiveness of the intervention in improving knowledge, performance and application of grocery shopping skills, and the relationship of cognition to skill acquisition. The findings provide direction for enhancing this and other skills training interventions.

Consumer's Participation in Nursing Home Decision Making Preferences and Perceptions, University of Maryland, Baltimore County (H133G000068) led by Nancy Miller, PhD. Sean Sweeney, PhD, Project Officer.
Abstract: This study examines long-term care decision-making as it relates to institutional admission and discharge, given these decisions' critical influence on individuals' opportunities to attain valued long term care goals. Within the nursing home population, the study explores the decision-making process with working age individuals, as there is sparse information related to these individuals and their nursing home experiences.

Great Season Openers!NIDRR’s new funding priorities create research opportunities in previously unexplored subjects like home ownership and spiritual care.

Survey of Home Ownership Nationwide, University of New Hampshire (H133G000034) led by David Hagner, PhD. Richard E. Wilson II, EdD, Project Officer.
Abstract: The project systematically investigates the quality of life outcomes of home ownership for people with severe disabilities, and the personal, service system, financial system, and support network variables associated with achieving and maintaining successful home ownership.
Find out more at:

Identifying Social Integration Needs During Transition to Adulthood Following Traumatic Brain Injury, University of Michigan (H133G000038) led by Seth Warschausky, PhD. Constance Pledger, EdD, Project Officer.
Abstract: The study identifies specific social rehabilitation and integration needs of persons with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). Social functioning is a core domain of quality of life, a key predictor of well-being and critical to development of independence. Earlier work has clearly demonstrated that persons with TBI are at risk for social isolation and impaired social problem-solving skills (SPS) including the ability to be assertive in achieving desired social outcomes in school, work, and other settings. SPSs have been shown to be powerful predictors of social success and integration in non-injured individuals.

Self-Employment Technology Transfer (SETT), University of Montana (H133G000189) led by Nancy Arnold, PhD. Delores Watkins, Project Officer.
Abstract: The Self-Employment Technology Transfer (SETT) project has developed and field tested a vocational rehabilitation (VR) self-employment support model based on extensive research. This project is designed to develop, demonstrate, and evaluate methods for facilitating the wide-spread adoption by practicing VR counselors of this empirically-derived model of standards and practices in a cost-effective manner and in a relatively short time.
Find out more at:

The Use of Virtual Reality Technology for Assessment of Driving Skills Following Acquired Brain Injury, Kessler Medical Rehabilitation Research and Educational Corporation (H133G000073) led by Maria T. Schultheis, PhD. William Peterson, Project Officer.
Abstract: The study examines the efficacy of a virtual reality driving system (VRDS) for the assessment of driving ability in persons with acquired brain injury (ABI) and stroke. The primary objectives are: (1) to evaluate the concurrent validity of a VR driving protocol, by comparing it to a traditional rehabilitation hospital based driving evaluation; (2) to examine the effects of the addition of complex and challenging driving factors (i.e., nighttime and traffic congestion) to driving performance within a VR environment; and (3) to elucidate the effects of demographic and medical factors, which may impede or facilitate driving performance within a VR environment.

Medication Management and Successful Work Transition in Persons with HIV/AIDS, Center for Essential Management Services (H133G000195) led by David Vandergoot, PhD. David W. Keer, Project Officer.
Abstract: This research project men and women with HIV/AIDS, many of whom are from ethnically diverse backgrounds and are economically disadvantaged. The purpose of this project is to identify effective strategies used by persons with HIV/AIDS for managing combination antiretroviral medications in the workplace.

Check for the 2000 SBIRs!

New Research: Selections from REHABDATA.

Kids are back at school, and that includes kids with disabilities...

Apter, D., Winschel, A. (2000) Moving on from preschool to kindergarten. Syracuse University. Accession Number: O13447.
Abstract: Booklet providing guidance for parents of children with disabilities who are making the transition from preschool to kindergarten. Discusses the transition process, including the Individualized Education Plan (IEP), Committee on Special Education meetings, and dealing with the school district. Includes definitions of educational disabilities under the New York State classification, and a list of abbreviations.

Bettinger, G., Boone, K., Kellermeir, G., Kuemmel, A., Mohr, M., Rintamaki, T., Ross, H., Winston, J. (2000) Take it from us: Strategies and ideas about going back to school. Medical College of Wisconsin, Spinal Cord Injury Center Accession Number: O13366.
Abstract: Booklet on issues faced by adolescents with spinal cord injury (SCI) as they return to school. The booklet was developed by youth with SCI and their parents as a resource for others. Strategies are offered for dealing with each issue including: use of a tutor in the hospital and after; asking for help from teachers or other students; classroom accommodations; educating others about SCI; dealing with parents; and dealing with feelings about brothers and sisters who have "normal lives.”