Perceived feasibility of an occupation-based telerehabilitation intervention for older adults with chronic health conditions in Israel

Hong Kong J Occup Ther. 2022 Jun;35(1):62-70. doi: 10.1177/15691861221080311. Epub 2022 Mar 3.

Abstract

Aims: Our study explored the perceived feasibility of using a home-based telerehabilitation service for older adults with chronic health conditions in Israel.

Method: This mixed-methods study included two focus groups of registered occupational therapists (n = 10) working in rehabilitation wards in Israel. Participants completed an open-ended questionnaire and Likert scale items so that data could be gathered on their perspectives regarding using an in-home telerehabilitation service for older adults after discharge from rehabilitation units. Thematic analysis with an a priori coding approach was applied to the data.

Results: Perceived advantages included transfer to the natural environment and the overcoming of geographical distance. Caregiver support and patient motivation were recognized as enabling factors. Perceived barriers included lack of hands-on contact and the concern that safety could be impeded by technological challenges and the patients' cognitive status.

Conclusions: Findings from this study can potentially contribute to facilitating the implementation of a home-based telerehabilitation service as a practical alternative for elderly patients after discharge from rehabilitation units in Israel.

Keywords: Telemedicine; intervention; occupational therapy; older adults; rehabilitation; technologies.