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Table 2 Characteristics of the experimental and the attention control interventions

From: Reducing the psychosocial impact of aphasia on mood and quality of life in people with aphasia and the impact of caregiving in family members through the Aphasia Action Success Knowledge (Aphasia ASK) program: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial


ARM 1: Experimental intervention

ARM 2: Attention control intervention

Aphasia Action Success Knowledge (Aphasia ASK)

Secondary Stroke Prevention Information Program (SSPIP)


People with aphasia and their family members

Timing of intervention

Participants will commence the intervention at any time before 6 months post stroke. Intervention will commence within 14 days of baseline assessments and will be completed at 12 months post stroke.

Intervention delivery mode

Intervention modules delivered face to face in 1:1 sessions.

Follow-up sessions conducted over the telephone.

Duration of intervention

Face-to-face intervention: 6 weeks of intervention modules delivered 1 module/week for 1 to 2 hours (minimum dosage = 3 modules completed and total contact time of 3 hours).

Follow-up phone intervention: up to 9 months of follow-up phone calls (of ½ to 1 hour duration) delivered monthly until 12 months post stroke (minimum dosage = 4 phone calls completed and total time of 2 hours).

Intervention provider

Qualified speech-language pathologist trained by the research team in either ARM 1 or ARM 2 interventions.

Intervention provider training

Therapy manuals provided to therapists, mandatory completion of literature readings, and mandatory completion of either face-to-face or online workshop for approximately 6 hours. If online training occurs it  will be recorded and accessed via Adobe Connect software.

Setting of intervention delivery

The intervention will be provided on site at the health service where the participant is receiving rehabilitation or, if the patient has been discharged from rehabilitation services, in the participant’s home.

Intervention process

Therapists will guide participants through the modules, setting goals, discussing content and answering participant questions and/or concerns. Tailoring of the content will occur in that participants will select the modules they would like to complete and in which order. Tailoring will also occur for differing levels of aphasia severity to ensure the intervention is communicatively accessible (for example, using conversational support strategies and seeing people with more severe aphasia in person rather than conducting the session over telephone for the follow-up).

Intervention content

six modules covering the following themes:

six modules covering the following themes:

• aphasia and stroke education

• stroke education

• basic communication strategies

• risk factor education

• strategies for managing mood

• lifestyle modifications for managing stroke risk factors

• strategies for maintaining social network support

• medications for stroke prevention

Intervention materials

Written support materials for each module with modifications made to formatting (for example, larger fonts and bolding of key words) in order to improve accessibility of information for people with aphasia. Additional video materials will be made available for some modules. Materials will be made available after the completion of the trial.

Fidelity of treatment

All treatment sessions will be video recorded. The first module completed for all participants will be submitted to research team for evaluation of patient interaction skills and content delivered. If deviation of fidelity is observed retraining of the therapist will occur before administration of the intervention continues. Following all first session evaluations, a random sample of videos will be selected to check fidelity is maintained throughout the study.