Mayo Clinic Traumatic Brain Injury Model System The CONNECT Trial

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Missing an early connection to services after TBI is a common need identified by individuals hospitalized for TBI and their families, indicating a lack of system capacity, which increases risk for poor outcomes while adding to personal and societal costs. Explosive developments in communication technology have brought tele-medicine to the forefront of health care. A need exists to test a model of care that remotely connects individuals hospitalized with TBI, their families, and their local health care providers to specialized brain rehabilitation services and to each other to determine if this increases system capacity. The proposed CONNECT trial aims to connect target populations with specialized brain rehabilitation providers using traditional (e.g., telephone) and customized communication technology (e.g., web-based, smart phone, social media, Skype) to test the extent to which interventions delivered remotely improve participation outcomes and satisfaction, when compared to a matched group receiving usual care. Interventions will include remote clinical assessment and service provision, partnering with local providers, care coordination, education, and supportive services. Using a randomized pragmatic clinical trial methodology, CONNECT will test the intervention in 4 Midwest states (MN, IA, ND, SD) with specific interest in rural dwellers, the elderly, and Native Americans.