Monique Vizzarri
Speech Pathologist – Northern Territory Government

Monique completed her Masters of Speech Pathology at La Trobe University and began her career in neurological rehabilitation in Melbourne. Monique moved to the Northern Territory in 2016 where she found her passion for working with Indigenous clients and incorporating language and culture into rehabilitation. Abby and Monique recently presented their work on narrative goal-setting with indigenous patients at the Occupational Therapy Australia NT forum, and are passionate about sharing their client’s story with a broader audience.

Presentation Title
‘I am the barracuda!’ Narrative goal-setting for Indigenous Australians in rehabilitation

Short Abstract
Our presentation follows the journey of an Indigenous elder from remote Northern Territory, who suffered a stroke in community and was flown to the Royal Darwin Hospital for ongoing care and rehabilitation. Through video footage and storytelling, he and his wife give you an insight into the trauma and tribulations of an extended hospital admission – from ED, through to rehab, and finally home. Working with this client led us to develop a strategy for goal-setting for cognitively impaired Indigenous Australians, based on previous general research in narrative learning and ‘yarning’ in these populations. This case study highlights the complexities of adapting Western approaches to rehabilitation, introduces a narrative goal-setting tool for Indigenous clients, and reflects on culturally appropriate service delivery across the care continuum.