Healthy living after stroke: An online secondary prevention program for stroke survivors

Years funded:
2017 - 2022

Stroke is a major public health concern and one in six people will have a stroke in their lifetime. Almost half of stroke survivors will have another stroke.

Many of the risk factors for recurrent stroke are modifiable, such as elevated blood pressure and cholesterol, smoking, heavy alcohol consumption, poor diet and physical inactivity as well as psychosocial factors including depression and anxiety. 
The National Stroke Foundation funded the development of an online “Prevent 2nd Stroke” program which aims to empower stroke survivors to improve their health risk behaviours and hence their quality of life, depression and anxiety, and independent living, while at the same time lowering risk of recurrent stroke. 

The program uses evidence-based behaviour change strategies, cognitive behaviour therapy to address depression and anxiety, and guidelines for dysphasia-related communication. 

In the pilot tests stroke survivors have rated the program positively on useability and acceptability. A rigorous evaluation incorporating a cost-effectiveness analysis is now needed. 

Dr Ashleigh Guillaumier will help conduct a randomised trial with a NSW based sample of stroke survivors recruited through the Australian Stroke Clinical Registry. This will assess the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of the online Prevent 2nd Stroke program. Evaluation with a NSW-wide sample of stroke survivors enhances its generalisability, and if effective, the online program can be disseminated online.

Researcher Profile

Dr Ashleigh Guillaumier

Institute: The University of Newcastle
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