Publication Abstract

Authors: Lambing A, Markey CA, Neslund-Dudas CM, Bricker LJ

Title: Completing a life: comfort level and ease of use of a CD-ROM among seriously ill patients.

Journal: Oncol Nurs Forum 33(5):999-1006

Date: 2006 Sep

Abstract: PURPOSE/OBJECTIVES: To evaluate use of a CD-ROM titled Completing a Life among patients diagnosed with serious illnesses for comfort level with content and ease of computer use. DESIGN: A prospective pilot study collected a convenience sample of 50 people diagnosed with life-limiting illnesses during a six-month period. SETTING: The hematology/oncology department of a large healthcare system located in a metropolitan area in the midwestern United States. SAMPLE: Convenience sample of 50 patients diagnosed with life-limiting illnesses. Of the patients enrolled (age range = 38-93 years), 72% were female, 68% were Caucasian, 50% were diagnosed with breast cancer or nonsolid tumors, and 40% were newly diagnosed. METHODS: Subjects viewed the CD-ROM and completed pre- and post-intervention surveys. MAIN RESEARCH VARIABLES: Comfort level with educational media, comfort level of information viewed, and areas of CD-ROM viewed compared to age and stage of illness. FINDINGS: Ninety percent of patients reported that they were somewhat or very comfortable with the CD-ROM as a learning tool, and ease of use was rated at 98%. Patients' comfort level with the material increased from 76% to 90% after they viewed the CD-ROM. CONCLUSIONS: The pilot study suggests that the Completing a Life CD-ROM can be used with patients facing serious or life-limiting illnesses as an additional resource tool for information. IMPLICATIONS FOR NURSING: Nurses typically provide the bulk of educational material for their patients. With limited resources available regarding management of life-limiting illnesses, this resource may provide an excellent addition to resources currently available.