UW CREATE Presents at the UWFB Meeting Spring 2024

The Center for Research and Education on Accessible Technology and Experiences (CREATE) presented at the University of Washington Foundation Board Meeting Spring 2024.

Kat Steele, Associate Director of CREATE introduced the impact of the center over its first 5 years and trainees, including former CREATE postdoc Kim Ingraham, present our research on the impact of access to early powered mobility at the board meeting. Check out the presentation (starting at 59 minutes, link to video on YouTube HERE ).

During the Cocktail Hour Showcase, Heather Feldner and Mia Hoffman also shared their work with HuskyADAPT and the development of accessible design and play technology.

As highlighted through these presentations, CREATE’s mission is to make technology accessible and to make the world accessible through technology.

NL Zaino, Z McKee, CD Caskey, KM Steele, HA Feldner (2024) “Perceptions and experiences of first mobility aid provision for young children with cerebral palsy in the United States: a mixed-methods study”

Journal Article in Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology 

This research provides insights into the lived experiences of clinicians and caregivers of young children with CP regarding the prescription, provision, use and impact of first mobility aids, specifically ankle foot orthoses and walkers/gait trainers.

Caregiver views of impact of first orthoses (n = 8) and walkers (n = 4). Proportional bar graph depicting caregiver perceptions on the impacts of their child’s ankle foot orthoses and/or walkers on various activities.Aim: The purpose of this study was to establish and understand the provision process and impacts of first mobility aids for children with cerebral palsy (CP) in the United States – specifically orthoses, walkers and gait-trainers.

Methods: We performed a mixed-methods study including surveys and semi-structured interviews of caregivers of young children with CP (n = 10) and clinicians who work with young children with CP (n = 29). We used content analysis for the surveys and inductive coding for the interviews.

Results: Four themes emerged: (1) first mobility aids have mixed impacts and use patterns, (2) there is varied caregiver education and understanding about mobility aids, (3) clinician knowledge, consistency and connection impact care and (4) numerous access barriers exist for families, and there are still opportunities for improvement across all domains.

Interpretation: This study not only provides researchers and clinicians with an understanding of the current status of the prescription and provision process in the United States, but also offers suggestions for improvements of the process and mobility aids themselves. These results have implications for future research, mobility aid, design and the provision process of first mobility aids.