e-Health interventions for the support of cancer caregivers

Cancer is one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Disease management mainly falls onto patients’ family caregivers, leading to significant burden, depression and low quality of life. For this reason, well designed interventions are needed to support caregivers in their difficult tasks. Nowadays, especially after the COVID-19 pandemic, electronic health (eHealth) interventions are gaining popularity, playing a vital role in supporting caregivers, as they seem to remove constraints in terms of time, cost, and immediacy information/support related to traditional supportive methods. Such interventions are smartphones, synchronous or asynchronous online platforms, websites, e-mails, telehealth, social media, online health portals, artificial intelligence and other applications. The use of these interventions has been linked to a number of advantages such as flexibility, possibility of remote access and optional operation, multi-functionality and personalization, the strengthening of self-management and the coordination of their work, the improvement of communication skills, quality of life, physical and mental health and the burden reduction. However, significant disadvantages or limitations that must be taken into account. The lack of digital health literacy and computer skills, the gender of the elderly, issues of cost, security, and accessibility, users’ preferences and their main unmet needs can be obstacles to the expected result. Further evaluation and research into the adoption and safe use of eHealth technology by cancer caregivers are needed to confirm whether eHealth interventions could be a viable alternative model compared to the traditional face-to-face approaches.

Category: Volume 63, Issue 1
Hits: 39 Hits
Created Date: 23-05-2024
Authors: Nektaria Skandalaki , Theocharis Konstantinidis