Purpose: The study aimed to understand the self-perceived environmental barriers/ facilitators to community ambulation among stroke survivors in Maharashtra State, India.
Method: The Facilitators and Barriers Survey /Mobility Questionnaire (FABS/M) was used to collect information from a convenience sample of 50 individuals with stroke. Data was analysed using descriptive statistics in Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) 22.00.
Results: Curbs, gravel surfaces, rain, noise, and crowd were marked as barriers by 56%, 58%, 52%, 36% and 50% of the participants, respectively. Ramps, elevators, and flat surfaces were reported as facilitators by 42%, 70% and 82% of the participants, respectively. Participants also mentioned the absence of automatic doors and escalators in community areas (92% and 88%), specialised exercise equipment, handrails and specialised bathroom equipment at home (92%, 50% and 52%), and inaccessibility to public places (50%), as barriers to easy mobility.
Conclusions: To enhance community mobility of individuals with stroke, environmental barriers should be reduced and facilitators should be enhanced. The marked absence of facilitators in the environment should be rectified and appropriate steps should be taken to enhance ambulation.
Limitations of the study are the small sample size. Factors like balance, economic status, physical activity of the stroke individuals and severity of stroke were also not considered.