Young people, adult worries: Randomized controlled trial and feasibility study of the internet-based self-support method "Feel the ViBe" for adolescents and young adults exposed to family violence
Number of pages
SourceJournal of Medical Internet Research, 19, 6, (2017), pp. e204, article e204
Article / Letter to editor
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Primary and Community Care
Journal of Medical Internet Research
SubjectRadboudumc 17: Women's cancers RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences; Radboudumc 18: Healthcare improvement science RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
BACKGROUND: Adolescents and young adults (AYAs) are of special interest in a group of children exposed to family violence (FV). Past-year prevalence of exposure to FV is known to be highest in AYAs and has severe consequences. Peer support is an effective approach to behavior change and the Internet is considered suitable as a mode of delivery. OBJECTIVE: The study aimed to evaluate both effectiveness and feasibility of a randomized controlled trial (RCT) and feasibility study of the Internet-based self-support method "Feel the ViBe" (FtV) using mixed-methods approach to fully understand the strengths and weaknesses of a new intervention. METHODS: AYAs aged 12-25 years and exposed to FV were randomized in an intervention group (access to FtV + usual care) and a control group (minimally enhanced usual care) after they self-registered themselves. From June 2012 to July 2014, participants completed the Impact of Event Scale (IES) and Depression (DEP) and Anxiety (ANX) subscales of the Symptom CheckList-90-R (SCL-90) every 6 weeks. The Web Evaluation Questionnaire was completed after 12 weeks. Quantitative usage data were collected using Google analytics and content management system (CMS) logs and data files. A univariate analysis of variance (UNIANOVA) and mixed model analysis (intention-to-treat [ITT], complete case) were used to compare groups. Pre-post t tests were used to find within-group effects. Feasibility measures structurally address the findings. The CONsolidated Standards Of Reporting Trials of Electronic and Mobile HEalth Applications and onLine TeleHealth (CONSORT-EHEALTH) checklist was closely followed. RESULTS: In total, 31 out of 46 participants in the intervention group and 26 out of 47 participants in the control group started FtV. Seventeen participants (intervention: n=8, control: n=9) completed all questionnaires. Mixed model analysis showed significant differences between groups on the SCL-90 DEP (P=.04) and ANX (P=.049) subscales between 6 and 12 weeks after participation started. UNIANOVA showed no significant differences. Pre-post paired sample t tests showed significant improvements after 12 weeks for the SCL-90 DEP (P=.03) and ANX (P=.046) subscales. Reported mean Web-based time per week was 2.83 with a session time of 36 min. FtV was rated a mean 7.47 (1-10 Likert scale) with a helpfulness score of 3.16 (1-5 Likert scale). All participants felt safe. Two-thirds of the intervention participants started regular health care. CONCLUSIONS: No changes on the IES were found. SCL-90 DEP and ANX showed promising results; however, the calculated sample size was not reached (n=18). FtV functions best as a first step for adolescents and young adults in an early stage of change. FtV can be easily implemented without extensive resources and fits best in the field of public health care or national governmental care. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Netherlands National Trial Register (NTR): NTR3692; http://www.trialregister.nl/trialreg/admin/ rctview.asp?TC=3692 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/6qIeKyjA4).
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