Author ORCID Identifier

Date of Award


Degree Type

Capstone Project

Degree Name

Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD)


Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Jon Thompson

Second Advisor

Emily Buchman


Title: Globalizing Occupational Therapy: Bridging Gaps in Community-Based Care of the Dominican Republic Through Digital Education in Therapeutic Interventions

Author: Laura Hildreth

Background: Stroke is the second leading cause of death and third leading cause of disability worldwide. Disability from stroke is especially found in low-resource settings where access to rehabilitation therapy services is limited. This paper presents the development of the Stroke Stride Rehab Program which is an evidence-based program aimed to improve stroke rehabilitation outcomes in rural and remote communities, specifically in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic.

Methods: The development of Stroke Stride Rehab included a detailed and comprehensive needs assessment including a literature review and stakeholder consultations to identify key gaps and challenges in stroke rehabilitation. Using evidence-based practices, technology access, and input from key stakeholders, the program was created to educate OTs, PTs, and other allied health care professionals on OT rehabilitation techniques for stroke survivors and provide resources to share with stroke survivors.

Results: The Stroke Stride Rehab program integrates video-based interventions and activities, QR technology, and capacity-building by providing resources to local Occupational Therapists, Physical Therapists, and other allied health professionals. The program aims to empower healthcare professionals and improve adherence to therapy exercises and activities among stroke survivors by emphasizing repetition, regularity, and cultural competence of resources provided through utilizing video-based resources.

Discussion: The Stroke Stride Rehab program aims to improve stroke rehabilitation outcomes in rural communities using technology and community partnerships. Key challenges including ongoing training for healthcare professionals and equitable access to technology must be continually addressed for the program to remain sustainable. Future research should focus on evaluating the program’s effectiveness and research additional technology innovations that may be utilized to increase access to stroke rehabilitation therapy services.

Conclusion: Stroke Stride Rehab exemplifies a collaborative effort to address complex challenges endured by stroke survivors in rural communities. Through integrating evidence-based practices, stakeholder input, and technology resources, the program has the potential to create a meaningful impact on the quality of life for stroke survivors and serve as a model for innovative stroke rehabilitation practices in settings with limited resource access worldwide.

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