Background: The increasing growth of the aging population has put pressure on public services especially healthcare services. According to the report by Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA), the figures show a consistent trend of growth in population aged over 85 (BelfastTelegraph.co.uk, 2019). The prevalence of chronic disease (e.g. stroke, multiple sclerosis) and may lead to increase of the limb disabilities (Sousa et al., 2009). To address the current need in reducing the hospital visits and risk of readmission, the home rehabilitation can be a viable solution (Bernocchi et al., 2016). The current challenges in home rehabilitation include the clinical interpretation of quantitative rehabilitation measures (e.g. motion sensing data obtained from inertial sensing unit) and understanding clients’ performance on prescribed tasks during home rehabilitation.
Project aim: The proposed system will utilise the sensing components from the clients’ mobile phone which saves the cost to purchase a motion monitoring sensor/system. There are two major aims of this project. One is to develop a mobile phone-based system which enables the clinicians to remotely assess clients’ limb movement. Secondly, the system is able to work as a single sensor-based rehabilitation exercise assessment platform to be used in home for remote rehabilitation with the ability to detect whether the prescribed home rehabilitation exercises have been correctly performed.
Furthermore, a visualisation platform will be able to provide for clinicians with the insights of clients movement performance. Visualisations can be co-created with healthcare professionals and variants can be objectively assessed and compared using eye tracking analysis. Motion tracking algorithms will be developed to enable the limb motion tracking by utilising a single inertial sensing unit (a smart phone in this project). Machine learning models will be trained for the purpose of recognition of clinicians’ prescribed home based exercises for patients. This proposed research project aligns with the school research focus in the areas of healthcare and interdisciplinary research.
BelfastTelegraph.co.uk. (2019). Growth in Northern Ireland's older population putting pressure on health and social services - BelfastTelegraph.co.uk. [online] Available at: https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/growth-in-northern-irelands-older-population-putting-pressure-on-health-and-social-services-38535101.html [Accessed 12 Nov. 2019].
Sousa, R., Ferri, C., Acosta, D., Albanese, E., Guerra, M., Huang, Y., Jacob, K., Jotheeswaran, A., Rodriguez, J., Pichardo, G., Rodriguez, M., Salas, A., Sosa, A., Williams, J., Zuniga, T. and Prince, M. (2009). Contribution of chronic diseases to disability in elderly people in countries with low and middle incomes: a 10/66 Dementia Research Group population-based survey. The Lancet, 374(9704), pp.1821-1830.
Bernocchi, P., Vanoglio, F., Baratti, D., Morini, R., Rocchi, S., Luisa, A. and Scalvini, S. (2016). Home-based telesurveillance and rehabilitation after stroke: a real-life study. Topics in Stroke Rehabilitation, 23(2), pp.106-115.
If the University receives a large number of applicants for the project, the following desirable criteria may be applied to shortlist applicants for interview.
The University offers the following awards to support PhD study and applications are invited from UK, EU and overseas for the following levels of support:
Full award (full-time PhD fees + DfE level of maintenance grant + RTSG for 3 years).
This scholarship will cover full-time PhD tuition fees and provide the recipient with £15,000 maintenance grant per annum for three years (subject to satisfactory academic performance). This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.
Part award (full-time PhD fees + 50% DfE level of maintenance grant + RTSG for 3 years).
This scholarship will cover full-time PhD tuition fees and provide the recipient with £7,500 maintenance grant per annum for three years (subject to satisfactory academic performance). This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.
Fees only award (PhD fees + RTSG for 3 years).
This scholarship will cover full-time PhD tuition fees for three years (subject to satisfactory academic performance). This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.
The scholarship will cover tuition fees at the Home rate and a maintenance allowance of £ 15,009 per annum for three years. EU applicants will only be eligible for the fee’s component of the studentship (no maintenance award is provided). For Non-EU nationals the candidate must be "settled" in the UK. This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.
Due consideration should be given to financing your studies; for further information on cost of living etc. please refer to: www.ulster.ac.uk/doctoralcollege/postgraduate-research/fees-and-funding/financing-your-studies
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