Research Projects

The Burwood Academy of Independent Living is involved in a number of national and international research projects.

Current Projects


The Transitionz Programme

This research project aims to find out what patients have accessed the Transitionz Programme at the Burwood Spinal Unit since it started in March 2009. This will contribute to an evaluation of the programme. Ultimately it is hoped this will lead to both an improvement in service delivery and outcomes for people with an SCI in New Zealand.
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ReVIVE: Rehabilitation Via Immersive Virtual Environment

This study aims to develop virtual reality software for eventual use during rehabilitation after a spinal cord injury

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Wheelchair users’ experience of community inclusion following the Canterbury earthquakes

This research project aims to find out about how wheelchair users have experienced community inclusion in the four years following the September 2010 Canterbury earthquake. This information can help local authorities understand the important factors for wheelchair users as communities rebuild.

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Factors influencing late outcomes after MTBI: an exploratory study

This is a cross sectional case control study using a bio psychosocial approach to selection of factors that have potential to influence recovery and outcomes after injury.

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Rehabilitation and Joint Replacement Outcome Study

This study seeks to investigate how much and which type of rehabilitation people with OA access in New Zealand both before and after their joint replacement and whether rehabilitation improves outcomes in terms of better quality of life, reduced pain and increased levels of activity and function. In addition we specifically aim to examine whether there are differences in access to rehabilitation based on factors such as ethnicity or rurality.

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Completed Projects

Bowel Dysfunction after Spinal Injury

The aim of the study is to understand the clinical effects of spinal cord injury on bowel function and relate bowel changes to the level of injury, its completeness and the time since injury

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BSU SCI Registry development project

This is a pilot project to evaluate the utility and feasibility of two registries (RHSCIR (Vancouver) and Victorian Spinal Injury Data Base) for providing demographic data on people who sustain a SCI in NZ. While the aim is to establish a Spinal Cord Impairment (SCI) national registry, the feasibility/ pilot study is to be Burwood based.

The New Zealand Spinal Cord Injury Registry was officially launched on the 1st August 2016
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SHIQ Program: Sleep Health in Quadriplegia:

Led by the Institute for Breathing and Sleep.

The Sleep Health in Quadriplegia (SHiQ) program will investigate the key causes, develop novel treatments and translate that research into improved outcomes for the full range of sleep disorders experienced by those living with quadriplegia. SHiQ aims to improve the diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of those with quadriplegia through a series of linked experimental and translational projects


SCIPA Programme: Spinal Cord Injury and Physical Activity: Intensive Exercise from Acute Care to the Community.

Led by the University of Melbourne

This program of research is concerned with understanding the effects of exercise on recovery, health and well-being after spinal cord injury.

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Ready To Roll Survey: Wheelchair users readiness for emergencies and opinions of a proposed Disabled Persons Emergency Response Register.

The Ready to Roll Study is being undertaken by BAIL and the University of Otago.
This nationwide survey aims to find out how ready for emergencies wheelchair users are and what they think about the concept of a Disabled Persons Emergency Response Register which could be used for planning and response to emergencies.
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Internet use by people living with disability:

The aim of this project is to provide a report that will form the basis for an ongoing programme of research on Internet use and the health and well-being of New Zealanders living with a disability or disabling health condition.

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