Plenary I

"Moving From Clinician Centered Towards Patient Engaged Rehab Research: European and USA Comparisons"


Online Program Link: Coming SOON>>>


Erwin E. H. van Wegen, PhD
Associate Professor, Amsterdam University Medical Center


Focus Area: Cross-Cutting

The objective of this plenary session is to present ongoing work on patient/provider collaboration in clinical care and research involving rehabilitative populations, including stroke, Parkinson, and Alzheimer's disease and related conditions. The international, well-known presenter, Dr. Erwin E. H. van Wegen, associate professor in neurorehabilitation at the department of Physical Therapy/Rehabilitation Medicine at the VU University Medical Center (VUmc) in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, will present current literature on patient engagement in research, compare and contrast EU and USA policies on patient engagement in rehabilitation research, and discuss innovative, transformative patient/provider collaborative data driven models in which people living with disabilities serve as co-researchers in the research process, from developing grant applications, to collecting data, administering health-enhancing physical medicine and rehabilitation interventions, disseminating products and policy change. Dr. van Wegen is principal/associate investigator on several large grants in the field of neurorehabilitation and coordinator of several teaching courses on movement disorders and rehabilitation at the Amsterdam Movement Sciences (AMS) Research Institute and the Faculty of Medicine at the VUmc. His subjects of interest are patient engagement in research and the coordination of locomotion and balance, as well as motor control, neurorehabilitation, and neuroplasticity in movement disorders, specifically in Parkinson’s Disease, stroke, and multiple sclerosis. At present, Dr. van Wegen is senior member of the Neurorehabilitation Unit at VUmc and local VUmc coordinator and steering group member in the 4DEEG project (an ERC funded grant), which is focused on investigating the longitudinal relationship between stroke recovery and brain plasticity on early upper extremity rehabilitation in stroke. Dr. van Wegen is also a Hersenstichting Fellow, member of several editorial boards of peer-reviewed journals, member of scientific research committee of the AMS Translational Research Institute (www.move.vu.nl), deputy-treasurer of the Dutch Society of Neurorehabilitation, and permanent member of the scientific organizing committee of the biannual Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair conference.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Become familiar with current U.S. and European policy, models and literature on patient/provider collaboration in the context
    of rehabilitation management.
  2. Identify ongoing EU and USA funded research projects as model systems of patient engagement in rehabilitation research
    including RCTs involving populations living with neurodegenerative disease and stroke.
  3. Identify steps of PhotoVoice, an ethnographic approach to research/policy change which gives "voice" to rehabilitative
    populations and clinicians working collaboratively, and empowers people living with disabilities as engaged researchers.
  4. Discuss barriers, opportunities and pit-falls in developing and implementing patient-engaged interventions in neurodegenerative
    disease populations


Dr. Erwin van Wegen's research and scholarship over the years has focused on the coordination of locomotion and standing balance as well as rehabilitation of recovery of motor and cognitive function, specifically in Parkinson's disease, stroke, multiple
sclerosis and the elderly. Dr. van Wegen is an internationally respected movement scientist. He works with doctors and therapists who want to give patients a more active role in their health care, and he promotes cooperation in the health care system. He calls the system he envisions "participatory healthcare". His external grants include more than 1 million euro funding as principal investigator and more than 6 million euro funding as co-principal investigator with a total of 39 funded grants. His projects include the European Rescue project (Research on Cueing) in Parkinson's disease, the Multi Center Explicit Stroke Trial, the 4DEEG Project, the MOVE-age Erasmus Mundus Project, the Care4stroek and Care4Brain studies, and the NeuroCIMT Trial. Dr. van Wegen is Fellow of the Dutch Brain Foundation, Deputy Treasurer of the Dutch Society of Neurorehabilitation, Chair of the European Foundation for Health and Exercise and on the organizing committees of the Congress of the Dutch and Belgian Society of Neurological Rehabilitation and the Dutch Parkinsonnet regional Congress. Dr. van Wegen was born and raised in Utrecht, The Netherlands, and was awarded a PhD at the University of Massachusetts for his study on "Postural stability in Parkinson's disease", mentored by Professor van Emmerik, a well known and long-time supporter of the ACRM. van Wegen is currently a tenured professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Free University Medical Center, Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Dr. van Wegen has published over 100 international peer reviewed papers, 16 book chapters and has a Hirsch index of 32. He has mentored 55 graduate students since 2010. He is an active cyclist and enjoys traveling with his wife (a physiotherapist) and their 3 children.


ACRM Annual Conference | Progress in Rehabilitation Research
CORE: 30 SEPT - 3 OCT 2018 // Hilton Anatole, DALLAS, USA // PRE-CONFERENCE: 28 Sept - 30 SEPT