Introduction: In Canada, approximately 12% of acute stroke patients are admitted to long-term care (LTC; or residential aged care) facilities following an acute stroke event. An additional 20-30% of patients are discharged home from hospital with referral for community-based homecare. Training programs for health care providers in these settings is variable and at times inconsistent with best practices. Internationally, focus is now shifting from a predominant inpatient acute care focus, to one encompassing ongoing care and support in the community for people living with stroke. In 2015, an educational resource called Taking Action for Optimal Community & Long Term Stroke Care (TACLS) was launched across Canada to ensure the appropriate knowledge and skills of front line care providers for stroke survivors in community and LTC facilities; the focus of this resource is on rehabilitation and recovery.
Methods: The purpose of this interactive session is to introduce the TACLS resource and to engage health professionals in an examination of current international community based rehabilitation and recovery programs. The discussion/workshop will allow participants to examine, compare and contrast components of the TACLS program with programs being developed or offered elsewhere.
Results: As health care providers helping stroke survivors live well and longer means investing in the use of best practice tools and resources that fit the local context and organizational practices. Bringing together international opinions and observations around post-stroke community care will allow cross-collaboration and inter-professional networking opportunities that ultimately will benefit patients living with stroke in community based settings.
Discussion: As care shifts from hospital to community based settings, the importance of tools available to support stroke survivors in this area of the care continuum is essential. In Canada, utilizing the HSF education resource (TACLS) provides information to support community based health care providers working with people who have had a stroke in helping them achieve optimal outcomes, regain their best level of functioning, and live meaningful lives.