• Tatla, Sandy


    Investigator, BC Children's Hospital
    Clinical Instructor, Department of Occupational Science and Therapy, University of British Columbia

    Degrees / Designations

    BSc (Kinesiology), MSc (Rehabilitation Sciences), MOT (Occupational Therapy)

    Primary Area of Research
    Evidence to Innovation
    Secondary Area(s) of Research
    604-875-2345 ext. 7004
    Lab Phone
    Mailing Address

    BC Children's Hospital
    Room F407
    4500 Oak Street
    Vancouver, BC V6H 3N1

    Affiliate Websites
    Research Areas
    • Knowledge translation
    • Health coaching
    • Motivation
    • Behavior change
    • Rehabilitation
    • Neurorehabilitation
    • Technology adoption
    • Inter-professional practice

    My research interests focus on promoting the best practice in rehabilitation and care to optimize health outcomes for patients and families through: the application of emerging technologies, engaging in knowledge translation and facilitating evidence integration to practice, and exploring factors that influence patient, family, and clinician motivation and engagement in the care process.

    Current Projects

    Coaching for Parents of Children with Type 1 Diabetes: Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is a lifelong condition that requires constant self-management, family support and supervision, ongoing learning, and medical support from a multidisciplinary healthcare team. Coaching is an approach which encourages families to actively engage in behaviour change to improve health and quality of life. This study will compare the effects of frequent telephone coaching for parents of children with T1D with routine care or frequent telephone contact (without coaching) on the following outcomes: 1) the child’s daily care, 2) health related quality of life, 3) diabetes-related family conflict, and 4) blood glucose control.

    Aquatic Therapy & Pediatric Rehabilitation: Pediatric rehabilitation involves working together with children and families to achieve child specific rehabilitation outcomes. Aquatic therapy is a unique intervention as it is done in an environment that can be familiar, natural, and enjoyable. Limited evidence is available regarding the effectiveness of aquatic therapy for rehabilitation, pointing to the need for research in this area. This qualitative study provides novel information about parents’ perceptions regarding the influence of aquatic therapy on their child's rehabilitation.

    FEATHERS: Functional Engagement in Assisted Therapy through Exercise Robotics: FEATHERS is unique collaboration amongst UBC researchers, graduate students in engineering, Physical Therapy, Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, and Kinesiology and therapists and patients/families from two community rehabilitation centers. The objective of FEATHERS is to develop social gaming programs, supported by upper-limb robotics, that will enable and motivate children with cerebral palsy, and older adults after stroke to engage in upper extremity home rehabilitation. The impetus is the mounting evidence that although intensive repetitive therapy is required to stimulate neuroplastic changes in the motor control system most patients do not undertake a sufficient number of repetitions of these tasks in their therapy or home training sessions. The FEATHERS team has completed focus groups, usability testing and is currently trialing this therapeutic approach with participants in the community.

    Selected Publications

    Schiariti, V., S., Tatla, S.K., Sauve, K., O’Donnell, M., & Dunn, A. (2015).ICF E-Tool: An online toolkit. http://learn.phsa.ca/shhc/icf/

    Schiariti, V., S., Tatla, S.K., Sauve, K., O’Donnell, M., Applying the new ICF core sets for children and youth with cerebral palsy in clinical practice. (2015). American Academy of Cerebral Palsy and Devleopmental Medicine Annual Meeting.

    Tatla, S.K., Shirzad, N., Lohse, K.R., Virji-Babul, N., Hoens, A.M., Holsti, L., Li, L.C., Miller, K.J., Lam, M.Y., Van Der Loos, HF. (2014). Therapists’ perceptions of social media and video games in upper limb rehabilitation. JMIR Serious Games. PMID: 25759148

    Lam, M.Y., Tatla, S.K., Shirzad, N., Lohse, K.R., Virji-Babul, N., Hoens, A.M., Holsti, L., Li, L.C., Miller, K.J., Van Der Loos, HF. (2014). "Perceptions of Technology and Its Use for Therapeutic Application for Individuals With Hemiparesis: Findings From Adult and Pediatric Focus Groups". JMIR: Rehabilitation

    Tatla, Sandy K., Jarus, Tal., Virji-Babul, Naznin, Holsti, Liisa. (2014). The development of the pediatric motivation scale for rehabilitation. CJOT

    Tatla, Sandeep. (2014). The development of the pediatric motivation scale for children in rehabilitation: a pilot study. (Msc), The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC. PMID: 26281433

    Tatla, Sandy K., Sauve, Karen, Jarus, Tal., Virji-Babul, Naznin, Holsti, Liisa. (2014). The effects of motivating interventions on rehabilitation outcomes in children and youth with acquired brain injuries: A systematic review. Brain Injury, 1-14. PMID: 24661000

    Lohse, Keith R., Hilderman, Courtney, G.E., Cheung, Katharine L., Tatla, Sandy K., Van der Loos, Machiel (2014). Virtual reality for adults post-stroke: A systematic review and meta-analysis exploring virtual environments and commercial games in therapy. PLoS ONE. PMID: 24681826

    Tatla, Sandy K., Sauve, Karen, Virji-Babul, Naznin, Holsti, Liisa, Butler, Charlene, & Van Der Loos, Hendrik F. Machiel. (2014). Evidence for outcomes of motivational rehabilitation interventions for children and adolescents with cerebral palsy: an American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine systematic review. Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology. PMID: 23550896

    Tatla, S., Radomski, A., Maron, M., Cheung, J., & Jarus, T (2012). Does the nintendo wii improve balance in children with acquired brain injury? Developmental Neurorehabilitation (Early Online).

    Honours & Awards
    • Margaret Hood Leadership Award (2013)
    • Margaret Hood Leadership Award (2012)
    • Child & Family Research Institute Graduate Studentship (2012)
    • UBC Faculty of Medicine Entrance Scholarship (2012)
    • Award of Excellence for Teaching at BC Children’s Hospital (2010)
    • Certificate of Excellence for Fieldwork Education (2007)
    Research Group Members