• adherence;
  • chronic illness;
  • glaucoma;
  • patient education;
  • support;
  • web-based intervention

lunnela j, kääriäinen m & kyngäs h (2011) Journal of Nursing and Healthcare of Chronic Illness3, 119–129 Web-based intervention for improving adherence of people with glaucoma

Aim.  To assess the effects of web-based patient-centred education and support on the adherence of people with glaucoma.

Background.  Glaucoma is a worldwide chronic ophthalmic illness with the symptoms of increased intraocular pressure which causes blindness. One problem is the poor adherence of people with glaucoma. Patient-centred approach should be the aim of patient education. Patient education of people with glaucoma focuses on symptoms, treatments, prognosis and medication.

Design.  A non-randomised experimental design with intervention of test (n = 34) and control (n = 51) groups.

Method.  The test group received web-based patient education and support intervention, which consist of several informational links concerning treatments, medication and self-care of glaucoma. The control group received the traditional patient education and support. The data were collected from adult people with glaucoma by self-reported ACDI instrument at baseline and follow ups (two and six months) between December 2008–May 2009.

Results.  Participants in both the test and the control groups showed improvement in their adherence. No statistical significant differences were found between the test and control group. Adherence to care (SUM9), support from nurses and physicians (SUM1) and care planning (SUM8) improved more in the test group than in the control group.

Conclusion.  The adherence of people with glaucoma in the test group improved on receiving this web-based patient education and support. However, the results of the control group also improved during the intervention. It is possible to improve chronically ill people’s adherence and self-care by developing new, time-saving and patient-centred methods using technical equipment.

Relevance to clinical practice.  These results are useful in developing new patient education and support methods for people with glaucoma as well as other people with chronic illness.