Evaluating eHealth interventions
Background and aim
The Norwegian Centre for E-health Research, in collaboration with partners from Israel and Switzerland has been engaged in the evaluation of the pilot of the SENACA ICT-based self-management tool for chronic diseases developed in Switzerland by European Medical Network AG. The project was supported by AAL EU funding.
The aim of our study was to evaluate the effect and the user-acceptance of the tool, by developing and implementing the appropriate evaluation method. A secondary aim of this study was to reflect on the fitness of the methodological choices we made and to share our experiences.
- The median age of the users was 61 (IQR 57.5, 69.5). There was no statistically significant difference between the difference time points in weight (Chi-Square=3.11, df=3, p=0.428), activity in steps (Chis-Square=6.7, df=3, p=0.084), diastolic blood pressure (Chi-Square=2.5, df=3, p=0.475) or systolic blood pressure (Chi-Square=6.528, df=3, p=0.089).
- User acceptance was generally positive at both time points (day 50 and day 100) and did not change significantly (Chi-Square=0.4, df=1, p=0.754).
- Many of the users reported that the SENACA system have had positive effect on them. The use of the system have made them more motivated to change behaviour, especially related to physical activity and nutrition.
- The evaluation method proved to be adequate for providing information regarding the feasibility of the tool, but the small sample as expected limited the potential for generalizations.
SENACA was safe and seemed to deliver the expected functionality, by helping patients to follow-up and maintain weight, and level of physical activity over time. Users also seemed to be satisfied with the tool.
Our evaluation method served its purpose and can be reapplied in the evaluation of other pilots of similar tools.