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Supporting the development, conduct, reporting and dissemination of large scale, co-ordinated
aphasia research activities which optimise the rehabilitation and recovery of people with aphasia
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New CATs website launched!

Our new website launched in September with a brand new design.You can explore our new content at www.aphasiatrials.org.
We look forward to your comments - let us know what you think!

Research Working Group Updates

Our Research Working Groups are growing and we are welcoming aphasia researchers from a broad range of disciplinary backgrounds. If you would like more information about joining the Collaboration, or would like to learn more about our working groups' current projects and members, please visit our website and complete an application form. Membership is free and available to individuals active in aphasia research. 

Assessment and Outcomes 

With a huge debt of thanks, we share the news that Professor Spyridoula Varlokosta [Greece] is stepping down from leadership. Her tremendous commitment to the Collaboration has resulted in the success of the Comprehensive Aphasia Test adaptation project and Prof Varlokosta will continue to play an active role in the group. 

Associate Professor Eftstathia Soroli [France] is our new Lead, with the support of Dr Silvia Martinez-Ferreiro [Spain] as our new Deputy Lead. Both researchers are long-standing members of the Collaboration and look forward to developing new projects while building on the group's substantial achievements to date. 

Predictors and Prognosis
The group discussed emerging findings from the RELEASE project at the CATs meetings in Aveiro and continued work on early publications. If you are attending the UK Stroke Forum, look out for our RELEASE presentation on 4th December!
 
The International Population Registry for Aphasia after StrokE (I-PRAISE) pilot continues to grow with partner teams in Malta, Germany, UK, Sweden, Australia, and Norway!


Effectiveness of Interventions
The ASPIRE Project is creating an inventory of aphasia treatment studies, comparing 2 conditions of SLT. This will provide insight into the gaps in aphasia treatment research, concerning content and descriptive quality and also the impact this has for clinical practice. We will keep you informed of early publications!

Societal Impact and Reintegration
We are currently discussing new projects related to Conversation Partner Training (CPT). Many of the members are already involved in research and implementation in CPT of family members, health care professionals and students. We are aiming to study CPT at a larger scale across countries. Current interest focuses on describing core elements of CPT, optimizing implementation of CPT and investigating CPT in acute phase.
Members of the Working Group for Societal Impact and Reintegration
discussing Conversation Partner Training research
CATs Trials for Aphasia Panel
The Trials for Aphasia Panel (TAP) aims to facilitate the commissioning, design, conduct, analysis, reporting and implementation into practice of high quality randomised controlled trials to improve the lives of people living with aphasia and their families and significant others. We will achieve this through a range of activities including: collating and sharing resources and funding opportunities, offering pre-review of protocols for applicants and expert peer review for funders, identifying research priorities and engaging with research commissioning panels.

Nineteen members have been enlisted to support the development of the Trials for Aphasia Panel (TAP). The first videoconferences were held in August, September, and early October. The panel agreed that immediate priorities will be establishing methodology resources (to be made available on the CATs website shortly). 

New Appointment for Global Engagement

 Dr Caroline Jagoe [Ireland] has been appointed as the Collaboration's Global Engagement Officer. The aim of this new post is to increase the global reach and relevance of the collaboration through the development of a strategic approach to integrate members from low and middle income countries as well as high income countries where aphasia research as a discipline is less visible.
Caroline is assistant professor in speech & language pathology in Dept of Clinical Speech & Language Studies, Trinity College Dublin. Her work focuses on acquired communication disorders and mental health and she has worked in both high income and low & middle income countries. She has a particular interest in individual and social interventions to increase participation and inclusion and  in how these challenges can be addressed in a global context.

Please get in touch with CATs@gcu.ac.uk if you can contribute expertise in cultures or countries currently underrepresented in CATs. In the coming months members will hear from Caroline with a request to provide information on cultural or in-country expertise and languages spoken. If you know of any aphasia researchers in countries not represented in the CATs network, please encourage them to get in contact with Caroline at CATs@gcu.ac.uk

CATs News from IARC 2018

The University of Aveiro's SLH Lab welcomed CATs members on 4th September for a series of events ahead of the International Aphasia Rehabilitation Conference (IARC).  

A ROMA Consensus meeting, an afternoon of activities for Early Stage Aphasia Researchers, a RELEASE Collaborators meeting, an Executive Committee meeting and our usual research group meetings were a great start to the conference.

A highlight of the Conference was the very special keynote from Prof Linda Worrall [Australia] who looked back on her influential career to share The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Aphasia Therapists with an audience which included many of her PhD graduates and current students. Linda established and led the CATs Working Group for Societal Impact and Reintegration and we joined the standing ovation and chorus of thanks for Linda's efforts for aphasia research. 

The IARC Conference Committee awarded the Best Paper Award to CATs member Dr. Ciara Shiggins. Congratulations Ciara!

A huge thank you from all CATs members to Dr Luís Jesus and Dr Assunção Matos (below) for their outstanding co-ordination and generous support in co-hosting the CATs events alongside IARC 2018! 

CATs for Early Stage Researchers 

Creating opportunities for postgraduate and postdoctoral aphasia researchers continues to be a core focus for the Collaboration. Our membership includes 60 multi-disciplinary Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) from across 25 countries.

If you were unable to join us on the 4th September, but would like to contribute to the ESR Forum, please get in touch with us. We always want to hear your ideas for future training, lecturing and other career development opportunities across all the aphasia disciplines. 

Research Outcome Measurement in Aphasia (ROMA) 

The ROMA consensus statement provides evidence-based recommendations for the measurement of outcomes for people with post-stroke aphasia. As part of a four year project, consensus is being sought for measurements of language, communication, patient-reported satisfaction with treatment and impact of treatment, emotional wellbeing, and quality of life. This will help to make aphasia data more meaningful and useful. You can find the latest publication from the ROMA Core Outcome Set consensus group here

Celebrating awards

Trustees of The Tavistock Trust for Aphasia
Congratulations to our funders, The Tavistock Trust for Aphasia who have been awarded the Gerry Cormier Communicative Access Award for 2018, by the Aphasia Institute in Toronto. This Award is given in recognition of outstanding contributions to reducing barriers to full life participation for those living with aphasia.

Dr Madeline Cruice and Dr Lucy Dipper 
Congratulations to CATS members Associate Prof. Madeleine Cruice and Dr Lucy Dipper who have been awarded a grant from the UK Stroke Association for a proof of concept study for their LUNA project

Prof Steve Small
RELEASE Collaborator Professor Steve Small has been awarded with the first Distinguished Career Award in recognition of his outstanding and enduring contribution to research in the neurobiology of language. 

The CATs News team wants to hear from you

The CATs social media team is always hungry for information related to aphasia rehabilitation research! Please let them know any news you think should be shared with the CATs community. We are proud to announce that the CATs twitter account now has over 1200 followers. A warm welcome to our new followers! Special thanks to  Dr. Ciara Shiggins for her brilliant live tweeting from IARC on behalf of CATs. 
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Collaboration of Aphasia Trialists · NMAHP Research Unit · Glasgow Caledonian University · Glasgow, Scotland G4 0BA · United Kingdom

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