Exploring the experience of service users following attendance at a student-led interprofessional neurodevelopmental clinic

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Garavelis, Khari Nicola
Hayes, Nicole
Rose, Tanya A
Maloney, Maree
Liddle, Karen
Moritz, Karen
Gullo, Matthew
Gullo, Hannah L
McMah, Rebeccah
Heussler, Helen
Reid, Natasha
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Purpose: The aim of the current study was to understand service users’ experiences at a recently established student-led interprofessional neurodevelopmental clinic for children and adolescents with suspected or confirmed prenatal alcohol exposure. Method: Semi-structured interviews were completed at 3-months post-clinic attendance with 10 service users: eight parents/caregivers and two youth workers/case managers. Interview data were analysed thematically using NVivo12. Results: Four main themes were developed: (1) clinic attendance seen as a positive event; (2) validation, clarification, and relief, but also challenges post-assessment; (3) need for further support and importance of advocacy; and (4) drawing on lived experiences for future service improvements. Conclusions: The current study demonstrated that service users reported benefits from tailored services delivered by student practitioners that were validating, supportive, and holistic. Findings from the current study can inform the development and implementation of future innovative service delivery models for individuals with suspected or confirmed prenatal alcohol exposure.IMPLICATIONS FOR REHABILITATION People with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) can experience a range of neurocognitive impairments that impact their day-to-day living. Access to assessment, early diagnosis, and appropriate supports are important protective factors associated with improved outcomes for individuals with FASD. Results highlighted the benefits to rehabilitation professionals of listening to service users to understand the complexity of their lived experiences, including how this information can be used to improve service design and delivery. Results also highlighted the potential role of incorporating student-led clinics within models of healthcare and rehabilitation service delivery. Utilising student-led clinics can help to increase access to specialised services for underserved groups in our community, combat shortages in the health workforce, reduce burden on the public health system, and educate the future of rehabilitation professionals.

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Disability and Rehabilitation

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© 2023 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way. The terms on which this article has been published allow the posting of the Accepted Manuscript in a repository by the author(s) or with their consent.

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This publication has been entered in Griffith Research Online as an advance online version.

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foetal alcohol spectrum disorder

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Garavelis, KN; Hayes, N; Rose, TA; Maloney, M; Liddle, K; Moritz, K; Gullo, M; Gullo, HL; McMah, R; Heussler, H; Reid, N, Exploring the experience of service users following attendance at a student-led interprofessional neurodevelopmental clinic, Disability and Rehabilitation, 2023