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TUES 24 OCT // 8:30 AM – 12:30 PM

Primary Content Focus: Cross-cutting, Measurement

Secondary Content Focus: Quality Improvement and Implementation Science

Determining which rehabilitation outcome assessments to use is challenging. Some assessments are appropriate for a wide range of diagnostic groups and others are disease-specific. Some assessments are good for making a diagnosis, others are better for capturing change. Knowing which factors are important for selecting the right outcome assessments is important for ensuring data are reliable, valid, fit within clinical workflow, and clinically useful. Outcome measurement is important not only for demonstrating value, but also to increase and advance clinical knowledge. The purpose of this instructional course is to provide rehabilitation providers the rationale and guidelines for choosing outcome assessments to use routinely in a variety of clinical settings.


  1. Recognize the value and importance and outcome measures in routine clinical practice of using classification schemes
  2. Determine outcome assessment selection including interpretation of measurement properties
  3. Evaluate, interpret and discuss strategies for integration of outcome assessments into clinical practice
  4. Increase awareness of how discrete data can be synthesized into knowledge to expedite patient care


Cedars-Sinai Health System

Deborah Backus, PT, PhD, FACRM
Shepherd Center

Trudy Mallinson, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, NZROT
The George Washington University

Sarah Morrison, PT, MBA, MHA
Shepherd Center

Maria Cecilia Alpasan, MA, OTR/L
Cedars-Sinai Health System

Richard Riggs, MD
Cedars-Sinai Health System


Pamela Roberts

Pamela Roberts, PhD, OTR/L, SCFES, FAOTA, CPHQ, FNAP, FACRM, is the Director and Professor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Neuropsychology and Director of Academic and Physician Informatics at Cedars-Sinai Health System, Los Angeles, California. She is also the Senior Director for Quality, Outcomes and Research at California Rehabilitation Institute. Dr. Roberts has worked throughout the continuum of care as a clinician, administrator, educator, and researcher. She has been instrumental in the development and implementation of system changes as well as rehabilitation programs across the continuum of care within a large academic medical center. She also teaches at the University of Southern California, and guest lectures at other local universities, a national FIM trainer and consultant for Uniform Data System in Buffalo, New York, and a CARF surveyor for CARFCommission on Accreditation for Rehabilitation Facilities. She is involved in the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine, American Occupational Therapy Association, National Quality Forum-Membership Partnership for Post Acute Care/Long Term Care quality measures and All-Cause Admissions and Readmissions Steering Committee, past chair of the California Hospital Association Center for Medical Rehabilitation Services, and past member of the California Hospital Association Post Acute Care board. Dr. Roberts is a member and Chair of the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine (ACRM) Stroke Interdisciplinary Special Interest Group and a member of the Vision Taskforce and Health and Wellness Taskforce and Chair of the ACRM Program Committee as well as the ACRM Board of Governors. Additionally, she is Chair for the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE). Dr. Roberts has served as principal and co-investigator on a variety of research projects and has provided a variety of workshops and consultations on rehabilitation, informatics and health services research topics regionally, nationally, and internationally.

Deborah Backus

Deborah Backus, PT, PhD is Director of Multiple Sclerosis Research at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. Backus is an experienced physical therapist, educator, and researcher dedicated to improving functional and health outcomes for people with neurological injury or disease, specifically multiple sclerosis (MS) and spinal cord injury (SCI). She received her BS in Physical Therapy in 1986, and her PhD in neuroscience in 2004. As part of the Eula C.and Andrew C. Carlos MS Rehabilitation and Wellness Program at Shepherd Center, Dr. Backus’ research efforts are focused on the assessment of the needs for people at varying stages of MS, and the evaluation of rehabilitation and exercise interventions that may be beneficial to people with MS. Her clinical experience combined with her research interests has fueled a passion for facilitating the translation of evidence into clinical practice, including influencing clinicians in practice, payers for reimbursement of evidence-based interventions, and policy makers related to health policy. Dr. Backus has presented both nationally and internationally, and has also published related to this work.

Trudy Mallinson

Dr. Trudy Mallinson is Director of the Advanced Metrics Lab at George Washington University. Her research seeks to translate better measurement into better outcomes. She advocates that assessments should look and operate like rulers, so they can use them that way: to measure a single dimension at a time, and compare real patient differences, regardless of who is using the ruler or who they are measuring.

Sarah Morrison

Sarah Morrison is the President and CEO at Shepherd Center in Atlanta, GA. Shepherd Center is a 152-bed private, not-for-profit specialty care hospital for persons with spinal cord injury, brain injury and other neurological disorders. As CEO, Sarah is responsible for all activities and operations within the hospital. Sarah is well known in the healthcare community, having written many peer-reviewed publications, conducted over 40 invited lectures nationally and internationally and actively participated in 8 funded research studies. In 2013, Sarah received the award for Clinical Excellence in Neurology from the Neurological Section of the American Physical Therapy Association. Sarah received her bachelor’s degree in Physical Therapy from the University of Miami, where she graduated summa cum laude. She received an MBA and MHA from Georgia State University, where she received the Max G. Holland scholarship for the highest grade point average in the graduate business program.

Maria Cecilia Alpasan is the Quality and Education Coordinator for the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Cedars-Sinai Health system. In this role she is responsible for all the education and quality initiatives across the continuum of care. She also serves on the Post Acute Care Advisory Board for California Hospital Association. She has been instrumental in implementation of quality metrics across the health system.

Dr. Richard V. Riggs is Vice President and Chief Medical Information Officer for the CedarsSinai Health System, Chairman and Medical Director Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Cedars-Sinai Health System, Chief Medical Strategy Officer and Chief of Staff of California Rehabilitation Institute. Dr. Riggs serves on the CSMC Board of Directors as well as on the Executive Committee of the Board. Dr. Riggs is a Professor at CSMC and UCLA. Dr. Riggs is board certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation as well as Clinical Informatics Subspecialty certification. He has published and lectured nationally and internationally on clinical and administrative rehabilitation research and topics, as well delivered lectures on physician leadership skills and health informatics. Current grant funding from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), United States Department of Commerce.


ACRM Annual ConferenceProgress in Rehabilitation Research (PIRR#2017)

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