The Development of a Nurse-Led Internet-Based Learning and Self-care Program for Cancer Patients With Symptoms of Anxiety and Depression—A Part of U-CARE

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Abstract

Background:

Having access to information about the disease and being encouraged to participate in self-care activities may reduce anxiety and depression symptoms in cancer patients. Internet-based interventions may be one way to support effective self-care strategies to improve emotional well-being and health-related quality of life.

Objective:

The aim of this study was to describe the development and acceptance of an Internet-based program intended to support cancer patients with anxiety and depression symptoms.

Methods:

A structured collaboration between patients, clinicians, and researchers was used to develop a theory- and evidence-based interactive health communication application (IHCA) based on Orem’s self-care deficit nursing theory with influences from Bandura’s social learning theory and psychoeducation.

Results:

The result is an IHCA described as a Nurse-led, Internet-based Learning and Self-care program that helps patients to perform self-care using different types of material in interaction with patients and healthcare staff. The acceptance of the program is consistent with the results of similar studies.

Conclusions:

Collaboration between patients, clinicians, and researchers seems to be a fruitful approach in the development of an IHCA aiming to support cancer patients’ self-care strategies. Well-designed intervention studies are needed to evaluate the effects of the IHCA.

Implications for Practice:

This article suggests a theoretical foundation for an IHCA and allows researchers and healthcare providers to take part in the discussion regarding format and content of IHCAs.

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