Stakeholder Perspectives on Engaging With Cerebral Palsy Research Studies After Onset of COVID-19 in the United States

Divya Joshi, Nayo Hill, Alexandra Hruby, Shreya Viswanathan, Carson Ingo, Heidi Roth, Theresa Sukal-Moulton*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective: To investigate the effect of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic on perspectives toward participation in cerebral palsy (CP) research. Design: An online survey with questions relating to the comfort levels of research participation was filled out by people who had CP or had a child with CP. Setting: The online survey was administered through Research Electronic Data Capture platform. Participants: A total of 233 (n=233) individuals with CP (42.5%; n=99) or with a child with CP (57.1%; n=133) consented and at least partially completed the online survey (n=210 complete; n=23 partially complete). All participants resided in the United States. Interventions: Not applicable. Main Outcome Measures: Readiness to participate was analyzed in the context of the time point for research participation during COVID-19 and whether or not the study offered direct benefits to participants. Results: Participants were consistently willing to participate sooner in studies that offered direct benefit than in those that did not. Adults responding for themselves had sooner time points for studies without direct benefit compared with parents answering for a child (P=.030). Gross Motor Function Classification System level, but not age or CP type, affected the time point for studies without direct benefit (P=.017). Personal values influenced selected time point for studies without direct benefit (P=.007), whereas environmental factors affected the time point for studies with direct benefit (P=.002). Local COVID-19 incidence rates were not associated with time points for either research type; however, respondents expected precautions to be taken if they chose to participate. Conclusions: As the pandemic evolves, researchers should consider the perspectives of potential participants as well as ethical and safety factors when reinitiating in-person CP research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1547-1555
Number of pages9
JournalArchives of physical medicine and rehabilitation
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2021


  • COVID-19
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Pandemics
  • Rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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