Impact on Research – Mona


Patients in Mona’s project helped to improve information materials by indicating when and what patients want to learn.


Interviewer: So tell me a bit more of what you felt were the benefits overall? Did the project take any directions that you wouldn’t have anticipated or were you able to do different things than you might have anticipated?

I think it pushed us to move forward and be bold within our research. Having patients involved at every level really keeps patient’s needs and perspectives top of mind at really at every level. So when it arose that we needed to have various methods of delivery for this type of intervention, we were bold enough to explore all of these avenues. So that included the development of a video.

And so of course we had other expert researchers involved who had expertise in terms of public service announcements etc. and we – along with the patients, we explored in which way we could do this video and we ended up doing an animated video. And so that – it’s something that takes – it is definitely more effort, it is definitely extremely rewarding and in order to keep patients in every step of the process for example you have to figure out how you’re going to do that if you’re going to develop something like a video.

And so we – when we decided on the animation, we wrote various scripts and we asked the patients to choose for us what kind of message, what kind of visuals would be the best, how we’re going to – what was the tone of the video, the mood of the video, all of that was conducted really with the patients. They told us what they thought it needed to have and then the animation experts, video experts etc. proceeded to make it happen.

Interviewer:  And what was the purpose of the video?

The purpose of the video was to garner interest because the intervention that we ended up developing was a series of booklets, a series of written booklets according to various themes that patients identified of information that they felt patients needed to have at the end of active cancer treatment. So with the video the purpose of it was to promote this and to incite people’s interest to go and pick it up.

And that was also part of the message that patients told us as well, they told us we don’t want to read a book of information when – after we finish treatment and we want to move on with our life. We want to be able to identify our needs first and then receive small snippets of information. So the written materials were fashioned in that way, a series of different booklets, the first booklet people were able to identify their needs through a simple questionnaire. And then in the first booklet it identified which other booklet you should go to for specific information such as finances, emotional issues etc. etc.

So, in the video we briefly explained how easy it would be and not necessarily a huge commitment of time, it’s the time that you want to put into it, and what the particular rewards possibly could be for you if you went and started exploring this kind of material. And the animations was chosen as the [kind of way] to go because it was more modern, it was a little bit lighter without being irrelevant or too fluffy and I think it worked brilliantly thanks to them.

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