In May 2015 BIAT implemented a 12 month Hospital Community Liaison Program pilot in response to the need for personalised support by people diagnosed with a brain injury and their families in Tasmania. The Program was modelled on the success of the BrainLink Community Liaison Pilot in Victoria.
The Program targeted families who had a loved one admitted to the Royal Hobart Hospital (RHH) neurosurgical environment, to enable the provision of support from the point of patient diagnosis through to post hospital discharge and into community care.
Families of individuals newly diagnosed with brain injury were provided with emotional support, education about brain injury, and information about, and referrals to, services by a Community Liaison Officer (CLO) who was employed on a part-time basis.
The program assisted the family members to understand their loved one’s diagnosis and to strengthen their ability to cope with and contribute to the rehabilitation process.
The report outlines the Hospital Community Liaison Program model, the rationale behind it, and the outcomes of the 12 month pilot program, including descriptions of the program participants’ demographic background, and findings from two program evaluations.
Learnings from the pilot and findings from the evaluations point to the overall success of the Hospital Community Liaison Program.
The overwhelming message was that participants wanted more of the Hospital Community Liaison Program, suggesting the rationale behind the program is sound and what is needed is more funding to reinstate and grow the program.
“The Community Liaison Officer is a multidisciplinary team in one person. Wealth of information on brain injury. There just needs to be an army of her.” (Program participant)
BIAT would like to thank the individuals, families, and health professionals who participated in the Hospital Community Liaison Program Pilot and generously shared their experiences in the evaluation interviews and surveys.
BIAT also acknowledges and sincerely thanks the Tasmanian Community Fund for providing the funding for the pilot Program.
In the lead up to Brain Injury Awareness Week 2017, BIAT, in conjunction with Domin8 Designs, produced a video with Ella, a sixteen year old Tasmanian girl, and her mum, Traci-Jean, about the changes to their lives after Ella was hit in the head with a hockey ball 14 months earlier.
As a part of 2016 National Brain Injury Awareness Week, BIAT worked with local media and design business Domin8 Designs to produce a short video with Alf, a Tasmanian with an acquired brain injury (ABI), to hear about his story and lived experience.