Due to the risk of infection, hospitals are reducing rehabilitation services for patients in non-critical conditions, e.g. those recovering from neurological and orthopedic injuries. Receiving timely physiotherapy and/or occupational therapy after such injuries is one of the keys for successful recovery. In the current extraordinary situation, thousands of patients cannot receive rehabilitation, limiting their recovery possibilities. Moreover, secondary complications may arise. In the long run, these patients will face difficulties to regain independency in daily life and lower chances to contribute to society.
Adequate arm and hand function is one of the most important factors to assure independence in daily activities, such as getting dressed, preparing food and basic hygiene tasks. Patients recovering from a neurological or orthopedic injury often experience loss or deterioration of arm and hand function. To relearn how to use their arm and hand, repetitive and task-specific training is key. During training, patients also benefit from augmented feedback about their performance, as it provides a motivation and thereby boosts the recovery process.
Telerehabilitation can provide therapy to patients without exposing them to additional risks through proximity with other patients/therapists. Hocoma’s sensor-based system, Armeo®Senso, could provide functional movement therapy at home. This allows to reach a large group of patients who are eligible for rehabilitation, but who are currently denied therapy due to the restrictions that have been set in place to limit the further spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. The therapist can set up a personalized therapy plan and monitor the adherence through remote connection to the patients’ computing device. Patients are thereby offered individually tailored arm and hand rehabilitation which they can perform from the comfort and safety of their own homes, while they can stay in contact with the therapist, thereby also reducing social isolation.
Major project results and impact created by the remote, data-driven therapy program:
– Tele-rehabilitation system for upper-extremity training in simulated and real operational environments
Declaration of impact