Evaluating the acceptability of digital interventions for improving quality of life in adults with asthma

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


Background: Using digital behaviour change interventions to aid self-management of longterm conditions such as asthma is increasingly recognised as effective and cost-effective. To address critical issues such as low uptake and ongoing engagement, both qualitive and quantitative approaches can be used. We will consider such approaches used during the development and evaluation of ‘My Breathing Matters’, a digital asthma self-management intervention, and ‘Headspace’, a popular mindfulness-meditation app. Methods: In the iterative, person-based development of ‘My Breathing Matters’ 30 adults with asthma were interviewed until the intervention was optimally acceptable and engaging. The intervention was then evaluated in a randomised feasibility trial of 88 adults with asthma with questionnaires at baseline, 3 and 12-months, and a further 18 qualitative interviews were conducted and thematically analysed. ‘Headspace’ was evaluated in 158 adults with asthma with questionnaires at baseline and 3-month follow-up alongside 30 patient interviews. Both interventions gathered detailed usage data which was triangulated with qualitative and quantitative questionnaire data to understand engagement and acceptability. Findings: Thematic analysis found both interventions to be acceptable and engaging, and usage data demonstrated both were frequently used (Median usage ‘My Breathing Matters’: 4 [IQR 8], Headspace: 8.5, [IQR 32]). People who repeatedly accessed the interventions often returned for specific, favoured intervention components (eg Breathing Retraining). Discussion: Complementary insights from quantitative, qualitative and usage data should be triangulated to understand whether an intervention is acceptable and engaging for targeted populations. Interventions can be further optimised by understanding the individual differences required to facilitate ‘effective engagement.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 2019

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