Goal attainment scaling: Does it provide added value as a person-centred measure for evaluation of outcome in neurorehabilitation following acquired brain injury?
Lynne Turner-Stokes, Heather Williams, Jane Johnson
Objective: To compare goal attainment scaling (GAS) and standardized measures in evaluation of person-centred outcomes in neurorehabilitation.
Design: A prospective cohort analysis from a tertiary inpatient neuro-rehabilitation service for younger adults with complex neurological disability.
Subjects/patients: Consecutive patients (n = 164) admitted for rehabilitation following acquired brain injury (any cause) over 3 years. Mean age 44.8 (standard deviation 14.4) years. Diagnosis: 66% strokes, 18% trauma, 16% other. Male:female ratio 102:62.
Methods: GAS-rated achievement of 1–6 patient-selected goals was compared with the Functional Assessment Measure (UK FIM+FAM), and Barthel Index (BI), rated on admission and discharge. Personal goals were mapped retrospectively to the FIM+FAM and International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF).
Results: Median (interquartile range; IQR) GAS T-scores were 50.0 (44.2–51.8) and moderately correlated with changes in FIM+FAM and BI (both rho 0.38 (p < 0.001)). Standardized response means were 2.2, 1.6 and 1.4 for GAS, FIM+FAM and BI, respectively. Of 667 personal goals set, 495 (74%) were fully achieved. Although 413 (62%) goals were reflected by changes in FIM+FAM, over one-third of goals were set in other areas.
Conclusion: GAS appeared to be more responsive, and captured gains beyond the FIM+FAM, thus providing added value as an adjunct to outcome measurement in patients with complex disability.