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A Q&A with HOPE4ABI Main Image


Tue 02 Apr 2024

As we move ever forward into the digital age, researchers are finding new and innovative ways to deliver therapies and support to patients through the use of technology.

In this feature, we talk to researchers Dr Hayley Wright and Dr Aimee Walker-Clarke about their current research project, Hope4ABI.

Please tell us a bit about yourselves

We are researchers from Coventry University, and our work focuses on finding new and better ways to support psychological, emotional and social well-being after brain injury.

You have been working on a piece of research testing out a new programme called Hope4ABI. Can you tell us a bit about it?

HOPE4ABI is an 8-week digital programme funded by the National Institute of Health and Care Research to support mental and sexual well-being after brain injury. Each weekly topic covers issues that brain injury survivors have told us are important to them. HOPE4ABI combines self-management, cognitive behavioural therapy, and positive psychology. It aims to help survivors understand and manage changes to themselves and their relationships with others.

How did the idea for Hope4ABI come about?

Our previous research looked at links between sexual relationships and brain function. The more we learned about brain injury, the more we realised there is not much support out there for people struggling with intimacy, relationships, or connections with others. We were contacted by an Occupational Therapist who was keen to see more research on how best to support sexuality and intimacy concerns after brain injury. And so, the idea for HOPE4ABI was born!

What stage are you currently at with Hope4ABI?

Over the past 12 months, we have worked with brain injury survivors to co-design the HOPE4ABI programme. We have just finished a small-scale trial to test whether the programme is helpful and user-friendly. A total of 53 people with a brain injury joined the course after a very successful recruitment campaign supported by Headway!

What’s next for the project?

We will follow up with the HOPE4ABI trial participants across the next six months to see how they are getting on and if they are still using any of the techniques they learned on the programme. This will help us understand whether a large-scale trial is necessary to show us how much people can benefit from HOPE4ABI.

Are there any opportunities for people to get involved?

We have a range of projects developing practical support for people affected by brain injury. Our topics include sexual well-being, mental health, education experiences, and issues relating to substance misuse.

We’re always happy to hear from anyone who wants to get involved! Drop us a line at


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