A paper on the process our team uses to get new products and changes to policy and practice out to the public efficiently can be downloaded here.
Collaborative closed-loop design process
Tilak Dutta and Geoff Fernie
This paper outlines the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute Home and Community Team’s vision for translational research. The objective of the Home and Community Team is to help people age successfully by providing tools to manage the disabilities that come with aging. To facilitate this translational research and realizing real world benefits, the Home and Community Team has developed a collaborative closed-loop design process. We describe the five strategies that make up our approach. The strategies are: 1) Having a collaborative team of clinicians, technical experts, researchers and students; 2) Maintaining prototyping facilities on-site; 3) Using simulators to quickly, safely, and repeatably test ideas with the target population; 4) Building relationships with stakeholders; 5) Careful documentation in preparation of regulatory approvals. Together these strategies have helped our team focus on translating research findings into practical outcomes as the ultimate goal of our research. These outcomes include changes to policy and clinical practice as well as the creation of new products, in addition to the traditional focus of academic research groups on outputs such as publications and grants.