Understanding the Attitudes of Clinicians and Patients Toward a Self-Management eHealth Tool for Atrial Fibrillation: Qualitative Study.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common heart rhythm disorder and poses a growing disease burden worldwide because of an aging population. A multidisciplinary approach with an emphasis on patient education and self-management has been demonstrated to improve outcomes for AF through the engagement of patients in their own care. Although electronic tools (e-tools) such as apps have been proposed to provide patient education and facilitate self-management, there have been few studies to guide the development of these tools for patients with AF. OBJECTIVE:This study aims to explore the perceptions of patients and health care providers (HCPs) and their attitudes toward the use of e-tools for the self-management of AF. It also seeks to elicit the factors that contribute to these attitudes. METHODS:Semistructured qualitative interviews with HCPs and patients were conducted to understand the interpretations and expectations of an e-tool that would be used for the self-management of AF. Interview data were analyzed using an exploratory thematic analysis approach to uncover emergent themes and infer ideas of preferred features in a device. A modified technology acceptance model was developed as a framework to help interpret these findings. Data from the HCPs and patients were compared and contrasted. RESULTS:Both patients and HCPs thought that an e-tool would be useful in the self-management of AF. Although both groups favored educational content and monitoring of blood pressure, patients expressed more passivity toward self-care and an ambivalence toward the use of technology to monitor their medical condition. This appears to be related to factors such as a patient's age, social support, and their attitudes toward technology. Instead, they favored using the app to contact their HCPs. CONCLUSIONS:This study provides insights into significant differences in the attitudes of patients and HCPs toward the use of e-tools for self-care against their priorities. Understanding patients' motivations and their needs are key to ensuring higher acceptance of such tools.
Project description:Ovarian cancer is usually diagnosed at a late stage when outcomes are poor. Personalised ovarian cancer risk prediction, based on genetic and epidemiological information and risk stratified management in adult women could improve outcomes. Examining health care professionals' (HCP) attitudes to ovarian cancer risk stratified management, willingness to support women, self-efficacy (belief in one's own ability to successfully complete a task), and knowledge about ovarian cancer will help identify training needs in anticipation of personalised ovarian cancer risk prediction being introduced.An anonymous survey was distributed online to HCPs via relevant professional organisations in the UK. Kruskal-Wallis tests and pairwise comparisons were used to compare knowledge and self-efficacy scores between different types of HCPs, and attitudes toward population-based genetic testing and risk stratified management were described. Content analysis was undertaken of free text responses concerning HCPs willingness to discuss risk management options with women.One hundred forty-six eligible HCPs completed the survey: oncologists (31%); genetics clinicians (30%); general practitioners (22%); gynaecologists (10%); nurses (4%); and 'others'. Scores for knowledge of ovarian cancer and genetics, and self-efficacy in conducting a cancer risk consultation were generally high but significantly lower for general practitioners compared to genetics clinicians, oncologists, and gynaecologists. Support for population-based genetic testing was not high (<50%). Attitudes towards ovarian cancer risk stratification were mixed, although the majority of participants indicated a willingness to discuss management options with patients.Larger samples are required to investigate attitudes to population-based genetic testing for ovarian cancer risk and to establish why some HCPs are hesitant to offer testing to all adult female patients. If ovarian cancer risk assessment using genetic testing and non-genetic information including epidemiological information is rolled out on a population basis, training will be needed for HCPs in primary care to enable them to provide appropriate support to women at each stage of the process.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Despite a large number of clinical trials aiming at evaluating the digital self-management of chronic diseases, there is little discussion about users' experiences with digital approaches. However, a good user experience is a critical factor for technology adoption. Understanding users' experiences can inform the design of approaches toward increased motivation for digital self-management. OBJECTIVE:This study aimed to evaluate the self-management of cystic fibrosis (CF) with a focus on gastrointestinal concerns and the care of young patients. Following a user-centered design approach, we developed a self-management app for patients and parents and a web tool for health care professionals (HCPs). To evaluate the proposed solutions, a 6-month clinical trial was conducted in 6 European CF competence centers. This paper analyzes the user acceptance of the technology and the benefits and disadvantages perceived by the trial participants. METHODS:A mixed methods approach was applied. Data were collected through 41 semistructured qualitative interviews of patients, parents, and HCPs involved in the clinical trial. In addition, data were collected through questionnaires embedded in the self-management app. RESULTS:Support for enzyme dose calculation and nutrition management was found to be particularly useful. Patients and parents rapidly strengthened their knowledge about the treatment and increased their self-efficacy. Reported benefits include reduced occurrence of symptoms and enhanced quality of life. Patients and parents had different skills, requiring follow-up by HCPs in an introductory phase. HCPs valued obtaining precise information about the patients, allowing for more personalized advice. However, the tight follow-up of several patients led to an increased workload. Over time, as patient self-efficacy increased, patient motivation for using the app decreased and the quality of the reported data was reduced. CONCLUSIONS:Self-management enfolds a collaboration between patients and HCPs. To be successful, a self-management approach should be accepted by both parties. Through understanding behaviors and experiences, this study defines recommendations for a complex case-the demanding treatment of CF. We identify target patient groups and situations for which the app is most beneficial and suggest focusing on these rather than motivating for regular app usage over a long time. We also advise the personalized supervision of patients during the introduction of the approach. Finally, we propose to develop guidance for HCPs to facilitate changes in practice. As personalization and technology literacy are factors found to influence the acceptance of digital self-management of other chronic diseases, it is relevant to consider the proposed recommendations beyond the case of CF.
Project description:INTRODUCTION:Screening for atrial fibrillation (AF) in primary care has been recommended; however, the views of healthcare professionals (HCPs) are not known. This study aimed to determine the opinions of HCP about the feasibility of implementing screening within a primary care setting. METHODS:A cross-sectional mixed methods census survey of 418 HCPs from 59 inner-city practices (Nottingham, UK) was conducted between October-December 2014. Postal and web-surveys ascertained data on existing methods, knowledge, skills, attitudes, barriers and facilitators to AF screening using Likert scale and open-ended questions. Responses, categorized according to HCP group, were summarized using proportions, adjusting for clustering by practice, with 95% C.Is and free-text responses using thematic analysis. RESULTS:At least one General Practitioner (GP) responded from 48 (81%) practices. There were 212/418 (51%) respondents; 118/229 GPs, 67/129 nurses [50 practice nurses; 17 Nurse Practitioners (NPs)], 27/60 healthcare assistants (HCAs). 39/48 (81%) practices had an ECG machine and diagnosed AF in-house. Non-GP HCPs reported having less knowledge about ECG interpretation, diagnosing and treating AF than GPs. A greater proportion of non-GP HCPs reported they would benefit from ECG training specifically for AF diagnosis than GPs [proportion (95% CI) GPs: 11.9% (6.8-20.0); HCAs: 37.0% (21.7-55.5); nurses: 44.0% (30.0-59.0); NPs 41.2% (21.9-63.7)]. Barriers included time, workload and capacity to undertake screening activities, although training to diagnose and manage AF was a required facilitator. CONCLUSION:Inner-city general practices were found to have adequate access to resources for AF screening. There is enthusiasm by non-GP HCPs to up-skill in the diagnosis and management of AF and they may have a role in future AF screening. However, organisational barriers, such as lack of time, staff and capacity, should be overcome for AF screening to be feasibly implemented within primary care.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Self-management of exacerbations in COPD patients is important to reduce exacerbation impact. There is a need for more comprehensive and individualized interventions to improve exacerbation-related self-management behavior. The use of mobile health (mHealth) could help to achieve a wide variety of behavioral goals. Understanding of patients and health care providers perspectives towards using mHealth in promoting self-management will greatly enhance the development of solutions with optimal usability and feasibility. Therefore, the aim of this study was to explore perceptions of COPD patients and their health care providers towards using mHealth for self-management of exacerbations. METHODS:A qualitative study using focus group interviews with COPD patients (n?=?13) and health care providers (HCPs) (n?=?6) was performed to explore perceptions towards using mHealth to support exacerbation-related self-management. Data were analyzed by a thematic analysis. RESULTS:COPD patients and HCPs perceived mostly similar benefits and barriers of using mHealth for exacerbation-related self-management. These perceived benefits and barriers seem to be important drivers in the willingness to use mHealth. Both patients and HCPs strengthen the need for a multi-component and tailored mHealth intervention that improves patients' exacerbation-related self-management by determining their health status and providing adequate information, decision support and feedback on self-management behavior. Most importantly, patients and HCPs considered an mHealth intervention as support to improve self-management and emphasized that it should never replace patients' own feelings nor undermine their own decisions. In addition, the intervention should be complementary to regular contact with HCPs, as personal contact with a HCP was considered to be very important. To optimize engagement with mHealth, patients should have a positive attitude toward using mHealth and an mHealth intervention should be attractive, rewarding and safe. CONCLUSIONS:This study provided insight into perceptions of COPD patients and their HCPs towards using mHealth for self-management of exacerbations. This study points out that future mHealth interventions should focus on developing self-management skills over time by providing adequate information, decision support and feedback on self-management behavior and that mHealth should complement regular care. To optimize engagement, mHealth interventions should be attractive, rewarding, safe and tailored to the patient needs.
Project description:The prevalence of obesity is rapidly rising in Spain. The Awareness, Care and Treatment in Obesity Management-An International Observation (ACTION-IO) study (NCT03584191) was an international cross-sectional survey conducted to identify the perceptions, attitudes, behaviors, and barriers to obesity management for people with obesity (PwO) and healthcare professionals (HCPs); results from Spain are presented. In Spain, 1500 PwO (body mass index ?30 kg/m2 based on self-reported height and weight) and 306 HCPs (in direct patient care for ?2 years) completed the survey. Fewer PwO (59%) than HCPs (93%) agreed that obesity is a chronic disease. Most PwO (80%) assumed complete responsibility for their own weight loss, whilst 19% of HCPs placed the responsibility on PwO. One-fifth of PwO stated they began struggling with weight before age 15. The mean delay in discussing weight for the first time with an HCP was 6 years. Only 24% of HCPs thought their patients were motivated to lose weight, whilst 45% of PwO reported being motivated. Of the 67% of PwO who had discussed their weight with an HCP in the last 5 years, 66% had been formally diagnosed with obesity. Our Spanish dataset reveals discrepancies in the perceptions and attitudes between PwO and HCPs, thus highlighting the need to improve education about obesity and its clinical management.
Project description:BACKGROUND:eHealth is a broad term referring to the application of information and communication technologies in the health sector, ranging from health records to telemedicine and multiple forms of health education and digital tools. By providing increased and anytime access to information, opportunities to exchange experiences with others, and self-management support, eHealth has been heralded as transformational. It has created a group of informed, engaged, and empowered patients as partners, equipped to take part in shared decision making and effectively self-manage chronic illness. Less attention has been given to health care professionals' (HCPs) experiences of the role of eHealth in patient encounters. OBJECTIVE:The objective of this study was to examine HCPs' perspectives on how eHealth affects their relationships with patients living with multiple chronic conditions, as well as its ethical and practical ramifications. METHODS:We interviewed HCPs about their experiences with eHealth and its impact on the office visit. Eligible participants needed to report a caseload of ≥25% of patients with multimorbidity to address issues of managing complex chronic conditions and coordination of care. We used a semistructured discussion guide for in-depth interviews, and follow-up interviews served to clarify and expand upon initial discussions. Constant comparisons and a narrative approach guided the analyses, and a relational ethics conceptual lens was applied to the data to identify emergent themes. RESULTS:A total of 12 physicians and nurses (6 male, 6 female; median years of practice=13) participated. eHealth tools most frequently described were Web-based educational resources for patients and Web-based resources for HCPs such as curated scientific summaries on diagnostic criteria, clinical therapies, and dosage calculators. Analysis centered on a grand theme of the two-way conversation between HCPs and patients, which addresses a general recentering of the ethical relationship between HCPs and patients around engagement. Subthemes explain the evolution of the two-way conversation, and having, using, and supporting the two-way conversation with patients, primarily as this relates to achieving adherence and health outcomes. CONCLUSIONS:Emerging ethical concerns were related to the ambiguity of the ideal of empowered patients and the ways in which health professionals described enacting those ideals in practice, showing how the cultural shift toward truly mutually respectful and collaborative practice is in transition. HCPs aim to act in the best interests of their patients; the challenge is to benefit from emergent technologies that may enhance patient-HCP interactions and effective care, while abiding by regulations, dealing with the strictures of the technology itself, and managing changing demands on their time.
Project description:Objective:To describe and analyze the perception and attitudes of people living with HIV (PLWH) and HIV HCPs towards medication adherence with a focus on a digital medicine program (DMP) with ingestible sensors (ISs). Methods:This is a qualitative analysis pilot study of PLWH who were using DMP recruited by purposive sampling. A convenience sample of HCPs was interviewed. Semistructured interviews were conducted, and thematic analysis was performed. Results:Fifteen PLWH were interviewed, and thematic analysis resulted in three main themes: self-identified medication adherence patterns, experiences with the DMP, and recommending the DMP to others. Six health care providers (HCPs) described barriers and facilitators to adherence, as well as advantages and disadvantages of using or recommending the DMP to PLWH. Conclusion:This study evaluated participant and provider responses to DMP, which is a novel technology for real-time measuring and monitoring adherence with the IS. Participant and provider responses were mixed, highlighting both the advantages and limitations of the technology. Practice Implications. Taking PLWH experiences into consideration will enhance the development of this and other useful tools that clinicians and researchers can use for enhanced patient care.
Project description:BACKGROUND:People with diabetes are at risk for diabetic foot ulcers (DFUs), which can lead to limb loss and a significant decrease in quality of life. Evidence suggests that mHealth can be an effective tool in diabetes self-management. mHealth presents an opportunity for the prevention and monitoring of DFUs. However, there is a paucity of research that explores its effectiveness in the DFU patient population, as well as the views and attitudes of these patients toward technology and mHealth. OBJECTIVE:This study aimed to explore the views, attitudes, and experiences of a diabetic patient population with or at risk of DFUs regarding technology, mHealth, and the diabetic foot. METHODS:We used a qualitative research approach using in-depth interviews with 8 patients with DFUs. Questions were structured around experience with technology, current health practices related to diabetic foot care, and thoughts on using an mHealth device that prevents and monitors DFUs. We transcribed and thematically analyzed all interviews. RESULTS:All patients had positive responses for an mHealth intervention aimed at preventing and monitoring DFUs. We found 4 themes in the data: diversity in use of technology, feet-checking habits, 2-way communication with health care professionals (HCPs), and functionality. There were varying levels of familiarity with and dependence on technology within this patient population. These relationships correlated with distinct generations found in North America, including baby boomers and Generation X. Furthermore, we found that most patients performed daily feet checks to monitor any changes in health. However, some did not perform feet checks prior to the development of a DFU. Patients expressed interest in 2-way communication with HCPs that would allow for easier appointment scheduling, sharing of medical data, decreased number of visits, and use of alerts for when medical attention is required. Patients also identified conditions of functionality for the mHealth intervention. These included consideration of debilitating complications because of diabetes, such as retinopathy and decreased mobility; ease of use of the intervention; and implementation of virtual communities to support continued use of the intervention. CONCLUSIONS:Our patient population expressed an interest in mHealth for preventing and monitoring DFUs, although some participants were not frequent users of technology. mHealth continues to show potential in improving patient outcomes, and this study provides a foundation for designing interventions specific to a DFU population. Further research is needed to confirm these findings.
Project description:Background:The prevalence of obesity is increasing in South Korea. We aimed to identify the perceptions, attitudes, behaviors, and barriers to effective obesity care in South Korea. Methods:The Awareness, Care, and Treatment In Obesity maNagement-an International Observation (ACTION-IO) study was a cross-sectional survey conducted in 11 countries. Respondents were people with obesity (PwO; body mass index ?25 kg/m2 in South Korea from self-reported height/weight) and healthcare professionals (HCPs) primarily involved in direct care with PwO. Results:The survey was completed by 1,500 PwO and 200 HCPs in South Korea. PwO (78%) and HCPs (81%) agreed that obesity is a chronic disease, but more PwO (84%) believed that obesity has an extreme impact on their overall health compared with HCPs (65%). Most PwO felt completely responsible for their own weight loss (81%), and 78% reported at least one serious weight loss attempt in the past. In contrast, HCPs reported that, on average, only 35% of their patients with obesity had made a serious attempt at losing weight. Only 31% of PwO had discussed weight with their HCP in the past 5 years; of those, 78% appreciated that HCPs initiated these conversations. Short appointment times restricted weight loss discussions for 70% of HCPs, and 29% of HCPs expressed complete comfort with such conversations. Conclusion:South Korean PwO are motivated to lose weight and have expressed interest in HCPs being more active in their weight management. Further nationwide efforts may be required to lower the barriers to education about obesity and effective weight loss discussion and management.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Information technology tools such as shared patient-centered, Web-based medication platforms hold promise to support safe medication use by strengthening patient participation, enhancing patients' knowledge, helping patients to improve self-management of their medications, and improving communication on medications among patients and health care professionals (HCPs). However, the uptake of such platforms remains a challenge also due to inadequate user involvement in the development process. Employing a user-centered design (UCD) approach is therefore critical to ensure that user' adoption is optimal. OBJECTIVE:The purpose of this study was to identify what patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and their HCPs regard necessary requirements in terms of functionalities and usability of a shared patient-centered, Web-based medication platform for patients with T2DM. METHODS:This qualitative study included focus groups with purposeful samples of patients with T2DM (n=25), general practitioners (n=13), and health care assistants (n=10) recruited from regional health care settings in southwestern Germany. In total, 8 semistructured focus groups were conducted. Sessions were audio- and video-recorded, transcribed verbatim, and subjected to a computer-aided qualitative content analysis. RESULTS:Appropriate security and access methods, supported data entry, printing, and sending information electronically, and tracking medication history were perceived as the essential functionalities. Although patients wanted automatic interaction checks and safety alerts, HCPs on the contrary were concerned that unspecific alerts confuse patients and lead to nonadherence. Furthermore, HCPs were opposed to patients' ability to withhold or restrict access to information in the platform. To optimize usability, there was consensus among participants to display information in a structured, chronological format, to provide information in lay language, to use visual aids and customize information content, and align the platform to users' workflow. CONCLUSIONS:By employing a UCD, this study provides insight into the desired functionalities and usability of patients and HCPs regarding a shared patient-centered, Web-based medication platform, thus increasing the likelihood to achieve a functional and useful system. Substantial and ongoing engagement by all intended user groups is necessary to reconcile differences in requirements of patients and HCPs, especially regarding medication safety alerts and access control. Moreover, effective training of patients and HCPs on medication self-management (support) and optimal use of the tool will be a prerequisite to unfold the platform's full potential.