Caspian Priest led May’s eCoffee, taking us on a fascinating journey through the development of an app for research and intervention. The Abreast of Health study delivers a brief electronic intervention to women attending breast clinics, taking the opportunity to highlight links between breast cancer and alcohol consumption, and enabling users to better make informed health decisions.
A digital intervention allows users to explore independently and receive instant feedback, as well as being easy to distribute across different sites. It also has the potential to expand and streamline data collection. As the presentation slides explain, this is a three-phase project and Caspian talked about the challenges involved in the ethics applications at each stage.
Before creating any digital resource, it’s important to establish appropriate content and focus groups were involved in developing this for the ‘Abreast of Health’ app, which was then built by my mhealth.
Initially, users are asked to answer simple questions about their alcohol consumption and other details. Results are presented in a format that allows users to compare themselves with others, to assess their risk of alcohol-related harm, and to consider changes they might make to address this.
A range of short activities follows, with users able to select the headings that interest them. Succinct summaries of key information and some interactive tasks allow users to explore these topics in an engaging way.
Further development of the resource is informed by the way that participants make use of the app, and their feedback. The usability, acceptability and the feasibility of completing it in the clinic setting are all assessed.
So far the app has been received well and seen high completion rates. See it for yourself at: https://mymhealth.pprd.soton.ac.uk/ (Disclaimer: You will need a UoS VPN to be able to access this link. Please note this is a testing version and therefore will change.)
All feedback is very welcome and any questions, comments, or concerns should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our next eCoffee session is Tues 12 June, 10-11 in LF9. All are very welcome.