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Using child- and family-centred goal setting as an outcome measure in residential rehabilitation for children and youth with acquired brain injuries: the challenge of predicting expected levels of achievement

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Rob ForsythORCiD



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd, 2019.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


Abstract. Purpose: Collaborative goal setting is essential to provide child and family centred rehabilitation following acquired brain injury (ABI). Setting goals is challenging and requires prediction of rehabilitation outcomes in areas which children and families prioritise. This study aims to understand which goals children and families prioritise, and how accurately therapists predict the expected levels of achievement for these goals. Methods: 122 children with severe ABI admitted to a residential rehabilitation unit were included. Goal setting interviews were routinely held between therapists and the child and/or parents. Expected levels of achievement were set by therapists and reviewed on discharge. Goals were retrospectively mapped onto the International Classification of functioning, disability and health. Descriptive analysis of goal chapters, and accuracy of prediction was conducted. Results: 860 goals were set; 82% in activities and participation, most commonly in mobility, self-care and communication domains. Therapists predicted level of goal achievement accurately 46% of time (24% goals overachieved; 30% underachieved), and this was consistent across different goal types. Conclusions: Children and families prioritise mobility, self-care and communication goals during ABI residential rehabilitation. Predicating children’s outcomes is challenging, and children often over or under-achieve goals. Families need to be aware of this uncertainty during goals discussions.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Kelly G, Dunford C, Forsyth RJ, Kavcic A

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Child: Care Health and Development

Year: 2019

Volume: 45

Issue: 2

Pages: 286-291

Print publication date: 01/03/2019

Online publication date: 21/12/2018

Acceptance date: 18/12/2018

Date deposited: 18/12/2018

ISSN (print): 0305-1862

ISSN (electronic): 1365-2214

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd


DOI: 10.1111/cch.12636


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