Continuing the nominations for the 2020 Castor Research Award, here is nominee #5. The Coach2Move study looks at the effects of increasing physical activity on health conditions and life expectancy.

Research Overview

Coach2Move is a cost-effective treatment strategy for primary care physical therapists in treating older adults. Coach2Move focuses on increasing moderate-intensity physical activity, a variable known to decrease the risk for many adverse health conditions and increase life expectancy.

Coach2Move expects that older adults can be more self-efficacious in developing and maintaining a more active physical lifestyle by exploring and focusing on the ability to adapt instead of succumbing to disabilities.

The primary objective of the current study is to assess the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of implementing Coach2Move in a pragmatic, real-world setting.

About the team

  • Dr. Ward Heij works as a physical therapist in Geriatrics and Rehabilitation Science. He is currently working on a Ph.D. at the Radboud University Medical Center studying the implementation of the Coach2Move treatment strategy in sixteen practices in the Netherlands.
  • Dr. Steven Teerenstra is a biostatistician with expertise in cluster randomized trials for improving the quality of healthcare.
  • Dieke Sweerts is a physical therapist and physical therapy scientist and currently working as a junior researcher on the Coach2Move study.
  • Dr. Bart Staal is a physical therapist and a lecturer in Musculoskeletal Rehabilitation on the HAN University of Applied sciences.
  • Dr. Philip van der Wees is a physical therapist and the newly appointed professor of Allied Health Sciences. Dr. van der Wees is also a visiting professor at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences of the George Washington University in Washington, D.C.
  • Dr. Ria Nijhuis-van der Sanden is a physical therapist specializing in children and a former professor of Allied Health Sciences.
  • Dr. Thomas Hoogeboom is a physical therapist and is working as a postdoc and assistant-professor at the Radboud University Medical Center.

Study design and methodology

The Coach2Move study uses a cluster-randomized stepped-wedge trial design.

Cluster randomization avoids randomization at the patient and physical therapist levels and minimizes contamination between therapists working in the same practice. The stepped-wedge design makes it possible to roll out the implementation per cluster and, therefore, enables comparison between clusters, as well as within clusters between time periods: before and after implementation.

Study design conforms to the advice of the Medical Research Council. A process evaluation will be carried out alongside the study to gain insight into which factors modify outcomes and which factors influence the implementation at organizational, professional, and patient levels.

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Research outcome

Primary health status effectiveness outcomes for Coach2Move are based on the physical activity level of participants and functional mobility. A physically active lifestyle has shown to lead to decreased healthcare utilization and, thus, lesser costs.

Secondary outcomes include the level of frailty, perceived effect , and quality of life.

How Coach2Move uses Castor

The team used Castor to successfully build and customize a database tailored to our study—a database compliant with current general data protection regulations. “We used Castor-created forms for data entry and for secure storage,” said Dr. Heij. “In addition, we send surveys out to our practices to safely share anonymous patient data with the researchers.”

A favorite Castor tool is the user-friendly and well-organized eCRF function. Dr. Heij has used Castor for over two years now and has provided feedback on his experiences with the program. He was pleased Castor listened to his contributions and improved the program with their users in mind.

“Castor is a company that is growing alongside their clients,” said Dr. Heij. “And therefore, I wish them the best of luck in the future since I will definitely work with them again.”

Stay tuned on the Castor EDC blog for more 2019-2020 Castor Research Awards nominations. We wish the nominees good luck and smart science—and encourage all researchers to share their projects for the chance to win €3000! 

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