Translating research into practice

Participants view some of the research posters on display at the first Rehabilitation Scientific Day
Participants view some of the research posters on display at the first Rehabilitation Scientific Day

The first ever Rehabilitation Scientific Day brought the latest research front and center to CIUSSS West-Central Montreal rehabilitation therapists

Rehabilitation therapists and researchers from our CIUSSS were brought together December 11 for the first ever Rehabilitation Scientific Day, in collaboration with the Academic Affairs and Rehabilitation and Multidisciplinary Directorates and the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation of Greater Montreal (CRIR).

The event at the MAB site of the Lethbridge-Layton-Mackay Rehabilitation Centre showcased current research projects in physical rehabilitation by researchers and clinicians affiliated with the CRIR, as well as by researchers from universities and health establishments across Canada.

Five research projects were presented and over 40 research posters were on display, covering many client populations and disciplines. The CRIR is operated by the Pôle universitaire en réadaptation consortium, of which the Lethbridge-Layton-Mackay Rehabilitation Centre is a member.

The event was organized at the request of the Rehabilitation and Multidisciplinary Directorate to “cultivate a culture of science within the clinical teams in physical rehabilitation,” says Chantal Robillard, Planning, Programming and Research Officer.

The organizing committee’s goal was to hold a scientific day that would link rehabilitation research through the client, therapist, and researcher perspectives — a tendency being seen increasingly in research, says Ms. Robillard.

“This is a great commitment from the Rehabilitation and Multidisciplinary Directorate and the researchers themselves to engage clinical staff in learning and benefitting from research,” she says. “It may not be an international conference, but it allows for staff and researchers to network and build relationships, and to develop research projects that are more relevant to clinical needs.”

Dr. Joe Schwarcz, Director of the McGill Office of Science and Society, gave the keynote presentation on the ups and downs of communicating science. He stressed the importance when communicating scientific work of ensuring the context is well explained so as not to take data out of context for the sake of greater media coverage or readership.

Ms. Robillard says the Rehabilitation Scientific Day was a victim of its own success. The main conference rooms at the Constance-Lethbridge site had been reserved for the event, but the event had to move to the gym at the MAB site as the number of participants and research posters exceeded predictions.

The Rehabilitation and Multidisciplinary Directorate is keen to organize a second edition of the Rehabilitation Scientific Day. The committee will meet later this winter to reflect on the overall outcome and direction for a future event. “This type of event really gets therapists involved and reflect on their clinical practice. You incorporate the same treatment practices every day, and you often don’t have time to read up on the latest developments in your field or you do so superficially,” Ms. Robillard says.

“By attending a Rehabilitation Scientific Day, you have a half day of research work presented directly to you, you can ask questions, and it gets you thinking how you can improve your clinical practice.”