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January 2016

The Heart and Stroke Foundation (HSF) is pleased to present a new resource: Taking Action for Optimal Community and Long-Term Stroke Care. Closely linked with the HSF Canadian Stroke Best Practice Recommendations, TACLS is an evidence-based resource that provides guidance around how to provide safe care for people who have had a stroke and are living in community and long-term care settings.

The goal of TACLS is to provide information to support healthcare providers as they work together with people who have had a stroke to help them achieve optimal outcomes, regain their best level of functioning, and live meaningful lives.


The care described in this resource is applicable throughout recovery and resuming activities of daily life, a process that may continue for months and years after a stroke has occurred. It focuses on the care needed after the hyperacute (generally the hours immediately following the stroke) and acute phases (usually the first week following the stroke) have passed.

The layout of this resource follows the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF), the World Health Organization’s framework for measuring health and disability. The ICF provides a standard language and framework to talk about functioning, disability and health, using four domains: Body Structures, Body Functions, Activities and Participation, and Environmental Factors. This document is structured around the first three, with environmental factors being integrated throughout rather than addressed in a separate section.

Target Audience

This resource is written primarily for healthcare providers such as Personal Support Workers, Health Care Aides, Home Care Attendants, Rehabilitation Assistants, and others who are providing paid care, in any setting across the continuum of care, to people who have had a stroke. The focus is on rehabilitation and recovery. This resource replaces the HSF resource Tips and Tools for Everyday Living.

Citing Taking Action for Optimal Community and Long-Term Stroke Care (TACLS)

Heart and Stroke Foundation Canadian Stroke Best Practice Committees. Taking Action for Optimal Community and Long-Term Stroke Care: A Resource for Healthcare Providers. Ottawa, Canada: Heart and Stroke Foundation, 2015. In Print. Online available at www.strokebestpractices.ca/tacls

Copyright Information

The Taking Action for Optimal Community and Long-Term Stroke Care: A Resource for Healthcare Providers (TACLS) may be downloaded and printed for your personal, non-commercial and not-for-profit use only, provided that you do not modify any of the Content or Format and you do not remove or alter any visible or non-visible identification, marks, notices, or disclaimers. You may link to this resource from your website however, posting/storage of the resource on your website is not permitted (see Linking Policy for more details). All images in the resource are copyright protected, and may not be reproduced without permission. Please refer to the Heart and Stroke Foundation’s (HSF) Copyright Permission Guidelines for further information regarding acceptable use of this resource. To obtain permission to use or copy this, or any other HSF resources, please submit your request in writing using this online form.

Canadian Stroke Best Practice Recommendations

The information in this resource is based on the Canadian Stroke Best Practice Recommendations, which outline the best ways to prevent, diagnose, treat, and care for people who have had a stroke. Some of the best practice recommendations are included in this resource, primarily from the Transitions of Stroke Care module. The full content can be found on www.strokebestpractices.ca. In addition to the recommendations, the website also includes information on the types of services that should be available for people who have had a stroke; ways to measure how well stroke care is being delivered; and lists of tools, checklists and questionnaires that can be used to guide care for people who have had a stroke.

HSF TACLS Document

Correction (March 2016)

On page 157, in the section titled Encourage use of the affected limb, the first line should read:Dress the affected arm or leg first. Undress the unaffected arm or leg first.”

Holders of hard copies that have already been distributed may wish to make the following change in their copies.

Correction July 2016

Diagram on pg. 22, label on diagram corrected to read: Blood leaks into brain tissue.

HSF Healthcare Provider Stroke Resources

HSF Patient, Caregiver, Family and Friends Stroke Resources

Links for information sources used in TACLS (all used with permission)

  • Global Stroke Bill of Rights (page 4): world-stroke.org
  • Hierarchy of Visual Processing (pages 67 & 68): http://www.visabilities.com/
  • Positioning Diagrams (pages 134 & 135): creativelink.tv
  • Please note, images used within this resource are subject to copyright, and may not be reproduced or used in any way without prior written permission.