Deciding How to Stay Independent at Home in Later Years: Development and Acceptability Testing of an Informative Web-Based Module
SourceJMIR Human Factors, 4, 4, (2017), pp. e32
Article / Letter to editor
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JMIR Human Factors
SubjectRadboudumc 18: Healthcare improvement science RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
BACKGROUND: Seniors with loss of autonomy may face decisions about whether they should stay at home or move elsewhere. Most seniors would prefer to stay home and be independent for as long as possible, but most are unaware of options that would make this possible. OBJECTIVE: The study aimed to develop and test the acceptability of an interactive website for seniors, their caregivers, and health professionals with short interlinked videos presenting information about options for staying independent at home. METHODS: The approach for design and data collection varied, involving a multipronged, user-centered design of the development process, qualitative interviews, and end-user feedback to determine content (ie, needs assessment) in phase I; module development (in English and French) in phase II; and survey to test usability and acceptability with end users in phase III. Phase I participants were a convenience sample of end users, that is, seniors, caregivers, and professionals with expertise in modifiable factors (eg, day centers, home redesign, equipment, community activities, and finances), enabling seniors to stay independent at home for longer in Quebec and Alberta, Canada. Phase II participants were bilingual actors; phase III participants included phase I participants and new participants recruited through snowballing. Qualitative interviews were thematically analyzed in phase II to determine relevant topics for the video-scripts, which were user-checked by interview participants. In phase III, the results of a usability questionnaire were analyzed using descriptive statistics. RESULTS: In phase I, interviews with 29 stakeholders, including 4 seniors, 3 caregivers, and 22 professionals, showed a need for a one-stop information resource about options for staying independent at home. They raised issues relating to 6 categories: cognitive autonomy, psychological or mental well-being, functional autonomy, social autonomy, financial autonomy, and people involved. A script was developed and evaluated by participants. In phase II, after 4 days in a studio with 15 bilingual actors, 30 videos were made of various experts (eg, family doctor, home care nurse, and social worker) presenting options and guidance for the decision-making process. These were integrated into an interactive website, which included a comments tool for visitors to add information. In phase III (n=21), 8 seniors (7 women, mean age 75 years), 7 caregivers, and 6 professionals evaluated the acceptability of the module and suggested improvements. Clarity of the videos scored 3.6 out of 4, length was considered right by 17 (separate videos) and 13 participants (all videos together), and 18 participants considered the module acceptable. They suggested that information should be tailored more, and that seniors may need someone to help navigate it. CONCLUSIONS: Our interactive website with interlinked videos presenting information about options for staying independent at home was deemed acceptable and potentially helpful by a diverse group of stakeholders.
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