Information and communication technology in patient education and support for people with schizophrenia

Department of Nursing Science, University of Turku, Southwest Hospital District, Turku, Finland.
Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online) (Impact Factor: 5.94). 01/2012; 10(10):CD007198. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD007198.pub2
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Poor compliance with treatment often means that many people with schizophrenia or other severe mental illness relapse and may need frequent and repeated hospitalisation. Information and communication technology (ICT) is increasingly being used to deliver information, treatment or both for people with severe mental disorders.
To evaluate the effects of psychoeducational interventions using ICT as a means of educating and supporting people with schizophrenia or related psychosis.
We searched the Cochrane Schizophrenia Group Trials Register (2008, 2009 and September 2010), inspected references of identified studies for further trials and contacted authors of trials for additional information.
All clinical randomised controlled trials (RCTs) comparing ICT as a psychoeducational and supportive tool with any other type of psychoeducation and supportive intervention or standard care.
We selected trials and extracted data independently. For homogenous dichotomous data we calculated fixed-effect risk ratios (RR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI). For continuous data, we calculated mean differences (MD). We assessed risk of bias using the criteria described in the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions.
We included six trials with a total of 1063 participants. We found no significant differences in the primary outcomes (patient compliance and global state) between psychoeducational interventions using ICT and standard care.Technology-mediated psychoeducation improved mental state in the short term (n = 84, 1 RCT, RR 0.75, 95% CI 0.56 to 1.00; n = 30, 1 RCT, MD -0.51, 95% CI -0.90 to -0.12) but not global state (n = 84, 1 RCT, RR 1.07, 95% CI 0.82 to 1.42). Knowledge and insight were not effected (n = 84, 1 RCT, RR 0.89, 95% CI 0.68 to 1.15; n = 84, 1 RCT, RR 0.77, 95% CI 0.58 to 1.03). People allocated to technology-mediated psychoeducation perceived that they received more social support than people allocated to the standard care group (n = 30, 1 RCT, MD 0.42, 95% CI 0.04 to 0.80).When technology-mediated psychoeducation was used as an adjunct to standard care it did not improve general compliance in the short term (n = 291, 3 RCTs, RR for leaving the study early 0.81, 95% CI 0.55 to 1.19) or in the long term (n = 434, 2 RCTs, RR for leaving the study early 0.70, 95% CI 0.39 to 1.25). However, it did improve compliance with medication in the long term (n = 71, 1 RCT, RR 0.45, 95% CI 0.27 to 0.77). Adding technology-mediated psychoeducation on top of standard care did not clearly improve either general mental state, negative or positive symptoms, global state, level of knowledge or quality of life. However, the results were not consistent regarding level of knowledge and satisfaction with treatment.When technology-mediated psychoeducation plus standard care was compared with patient education not using technology the only outcome reported was satisfaction with treatment. There were no differences between groups.
Using ICT to deliver psychoeducational interventions has no clear effects compared with standard care, other methods of delivering psychoeducation and support, or both. Researchers used a variety of methods of delivery and outcomes, and studies were few and underpowered. ICT remains a promising method of delivering psychoeducation; the equivocal findings of this review should not postpone high-quality research in this area.

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    ABSTRACT: Digital technologies are increasingly directed at improved monitoring, management and treatment of mental health. However, their potential contribution to social networks and self-management support for people diagnosed with a serious mental illness has rarely been considered. This review and meta-synthesis aimed to examine the processes of engagement and perceived relevance and appropriateness of telehealth interventions for people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia. The review addresses three key questions. How is the use of digital communications technologies framed in the professional psychiatric literature? How might the recognised benefits of telehealth translate to people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia? What is the user perspective concerning Internet information and communication technologies? A critical interpretive synthesis (CIS) of published findings from quantitative and qualitative studies of telehealth interventions for people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia. Most studies were of an exploratory nature. The professional discourse about the use of different technologies was overlain by concerns with surveillance and control, focusing on the Internet as a potential site of risk and danger. The critical synthesis of findings showed that the key focus of the available studies was on the delivery of existing traditional approaches (e.g. improving medications adherence, provision of medical information about the condition, symptom monitoring and cognitive behavioural therapy). Even though it was clear that the internet has considerable potential in terms of accessing and utilising lay support the potential of communication technologies in mobilising of resources for personal self-management or peer support was a relatively absent or hidden a focus of the available studies. Based on an interpretive synthesis of available studies, people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia or psychosis use the Internet primarily for the purposes of disclosure and information gathering. Empowerment, regulation and surveillance emerged as the key dimensions of engagement (or not) with telehealth interventions. The findings suggest that telehealth interventions are disproportionately used by particular patient groups (e.g.women, people who are employed). Further research needs to ascertain the mechanisms by which telehealth interventions may be potentially beneficial or harmful for engagement and management to people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia.
    BMC Psychiatry 11/2013; 13(1):279. DOI:10.1186/1471-244X-13-279 · 2.24 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Around 20% of those who seek health information online, search specifically for mental health. However, little is known about the nature of the online health information offered by two European countries, Finland and Greece, which are characterized by markedly differing levels of Internet access and online health information seeking. This study aims to describe and compare two European, non-English language websites (Finnish and Greek) that provide information about schizophrenia or related conditions. The first 20 results from four search terms (searched in Finnish and Greek) in the Web search engine 'Google' were screened. A total of 160 websites were retrieved (80 Finnish, 80 Greek) and evaluated using a preformulated coding system which consisted of websites' indicators, such as: types, characteristics, accountability, interactivity, aesthetics and content. Differences between websites were evaluated with Chi-Square or Fisher's Exact tests for categorical data and independent t-tests for parametric data. Twenty-four Finnish and thirty-four Greek websites (36% in total) were included. Almost two-thirds (62%, n=36) were owned by an organization, compared to 17% (n=10) by an individual. In both countries, aesthetics had the highest score (possible range 0--4, mean = 2.60, SD =.62), while interactivity the lowest (range 0--5, mean = 1.79, SD = .87). There were no statistically significant differences among the accountability, interactivity and aesthetics scores of the Finnish and Greek websites. All assessed indicators suggest there is a need to improve Finnish and Greek online information about schizophrenia or related conditions. The poor website interactivity is of particular concern given the challenges faced by the target group. The findings can be used to guide the development and dissemination of online mental health information aimed at Finnish and Greek online health-seekers.
    BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making 08/2013; 13(1):98. DOI:10.1186/1472-6947-13-98 · 1.50 Impact Factor


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May 22, 2014