A Qualitative Exploration of The Experiences of People with Multiple Sclerosis who Receive Occupational Performance Coaching

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Malakouti, Niloufar
Multiple Sclerosis , Self-management , Occupational Performance Coaching
This study explores how Occupational Performance Coaching (OPC) influences self-management of the daily lives of people with Multiple Sclerosis (PwMS). Specifically, this study used qualitative interviews to examine the experiences of 10 participants with multiple sclerosis (MS) who received 6 sessions of telephone OPC over a ten-week period. Interpretive description was used as the methodological approach. Participants were interviewed prior to and after the OPC intervention. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed using thematic analysis at each time point. Following this an individual case analysis and cross care analysis were conducted to uncover potential differences form pre to post intervention. The analysis revealed themes of resisting MS, living with MS, ongoing challenges, and strategies prior to receipt of OPC. Similar themes emerged following OPC with the exception of the theme of resisting MS and the addition of sub-themes such as planning ahead, being consistent and talking about the plan to the theme of strategies. Individual and cross case analysis revealed that participants described less resistance to their conditions and a shift in their focus from problems towards solutions after receiving the intervention. Findings also showed enhancement of existing strategies and/or development of new strategies used to overcome ongoing challenges in living with MS. The findings of this study further our understanding of the development of self-management skills in PwMS and suggest that OPC could be beneficial in improving self-management skills in PwMS.
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