Better recovery after stroke: new international research project headed by Dalarna University

International researchers will work together in a collaborative project that aims to increase knowledge about how to improve recovery and quality of life for older people after a stroke. The project aims to strengthen self-care at home by focussing on the capabilities of the individual.

This collaborative project includes researchers from Latvia, the Netherlands, and Sweden and will be headed by Professor Marie Elf of Dalarna University. The Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare (Forte) has provided SEK 3 million in funding.

– The project will strengthen people's capabilities to manage daily life at home after a stroke, which is so important if care close to individuals and at their home is to be successful, says Marie Elf, Professor of Nursing. We intend to develop an intervention involving the person's social network and living environment.

According to the European Stroke Organization and the Stroke Association for Europe, there is an urgent need to address the currently inadequately met needs of people recovering from stroke at home. The new project aims to develop and improve the quality of life for older people in this situation.

– In a time of increasing demands for person-centred care and self-care, the project offers solutions to improve the quality of care services and to meet the needs of older people recovering from stroke at home, says Marie Elf.

The project EQL-stroke (Enhancing Quality of Life for Stroke) strives to build a more sustainable healthcare system by involving patients, relatives, and healthcare professionals in the design of interventions aimed at supporting self-care. Dalarna University already conducts research in this field and employs established methods to support individuals’ self-management. 

– We contribute with knowledge about how the living environment affects health and well-being, which is also part of the project. Our expertise spans self-management, the importance of social networks, and interdisciplinary work, which forms part of our work. This is reflected in our project team's international and interdisciplinary structure and collaboration, says Marie Elf.

The Forte grant of SEK 3 million, part of a larger international funding package of SEK 9 million across three countries, gives us a solid foundation to build on.

Facts about stroke

Stroke is a major public health challenge in Europe, especially among the older population. Globally every year, around 15 million people have a stroke, 1.1 million of them in Europe, and the consequences are severe. Long-term disabilities, limitations in activities and participation in society, reduced quality of life, and risk of social isolation and fall injuries are common.

About the Project

Project title: EQL-stroke (Enhancing Quality of Life for Stroke)

Project manager: Marie Elf, Professor of Nursing

Project members from Dalarna University: Malin Tistad, Maya Kylén, affiliated researcher from Lund University.

Funding: SEK 3 million from the THCS ( Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare (Forte)

Marie Elf
Professor Nursing
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