Therapy Online: A Web-Based Video Support Group for Family Caregivers of Survivors With Traumatic Brain Injury

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Abstract

Objective:

This innovative descriptive study explores the benefits of a traumatic brain injury (TBI) caregiver support group intervention provided using videoconferencing within a password protected Web-based platform.

Methods:

Ten caregivers of family members with TBI were registered to a password-protected Web site (Caring for Others) that provided information about caring for a person with TBI and access to a videoconferencing support group intervention program. Where needed, caregivers were provided with computer equipment, Internet access, and training to negotiate the Web site links. Two groups of 5 caregivers of survivors of TBI participated (average age of survivor—20 years, average time since injury—4.6 years) and met online with a trained clinician weekly for 10 sessions. Using directed content analysis, transcripts of each session were coded with NVivo software.

Results:

The content analysis reported group process themes, therapeutic interventions used, caregiver outcomes, and the challenges for clinicians delivering a therapeutic intervention online.

Conclusions:

Traumatic brain injury caregivers shared similar concerns and problem-solving strategies for managing caregiving tasks. Overall, participants found the sessions helpful for managing the emotional impact of caring for a family member with TBI.

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