Brain injury citizens jury

Brain injury is tragic, complex and rehabilitation long and arduous. Melbourne’s Alfred Hospital recently opened a brand new Brain Injury Rehabilitation Centre at the Caulfield Hospital, supported by the Victorian government, Latrobe University and other partners. Of course, they’d like rehabilitation practices at the hospital to be smart as the new building itself. Research evidence gives some clear directions.

Researchers at Latrobe University asked: What if an ordinary community member was exposed to the research evidence? In this complex terrain, would their preferences lead in the same direction as the research? Within budget constraints, what would they consider essential for successful rehabilitation? They approached Annie Bolitho & Associates to advise on the design of a citizens jury and facilitate the two-day jury. The citizens jury explored what a randomly selected group of people with no stake in the issue whatsoever had to say, after being exposed to research evidence and deliberating together.

‘Annie provided us  a clear idea of how to convey concepts that we as health professsionals take for granted. Her guidance was very much about helping us understand what the citizens jury approach is capable of delivering. The process was completely novel for us, and Annie’s knowledge of what jurors need was essential. We needed to know what had to occur on the two days of the jury and how that would play out,’ said Assoc. Prof Natasha Lannin when the jury wrapped up.