A multimedia campaign to improve back beliefs in patients with non-specific low back pain: a process evaluation

Arnela Suman, Frederieke G. Schaafsma*, Jiman Bamarni, Maurits W. Van Tulder, Johannes R. Anema

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: Low back pain (LBP) is one of the most prevalent and costly disorders worldwide. To reduce its burden in the Netherlands, implementation of a multidisciplinary guideline for LBP was supported by a multifaceted eHealth campaign for patients with LBP. The current study aims 1) to evaluate whether the implementation strategy was performed as planned; 2) to assess the feasibility, barriers and facilitators of the patient based eHealth campaign; 3) to gain insight into the satisfaction and experiences of patients with various ethnic backgrounds with the implementation strategy and to make a comparison between them; and 4) to explore the association between exposure to and satisfaction with the implementation strategy. Methods: This process evaluation was performed using the Linnan and Steckler framework, and used a mixed methods approach for data collection and analysis. The relationship between satisfaction of patients and exposure to the strategy was statistically examined. Semi-structured interviews were analysed using qualitative data analysis methods. Results: Two hundred and fourteen patients participated in the quantitative, and 44 in the qualitative analysis. Most were female and had a high level of education. Many patients did not use the campaign at all or only once, and those that did rated it as reasonable. Patient satisfaction with the campaign increased significantly with an increase in its use. Qualitative analysis showed that four main themes played a role in campaign rating and use: satisfaction with intervention components, perceived benefits of the intervention, usage of the intervention, and satisfaction with the medium used. Conclusion: This process evaluation showed that the eHealth campaign was used only by a small proportion of patients with non-specific LBP. It seemed that the campaign was offered to the patients too late, that the lay-out of the campaign did not meet patient needs, and that healthcare providers rarely discussed the campaign with their patients, while involvement of those providers seemed to improve trustworthiness of the campaign and increase its usage. It is important to invest effort into healthcare providers to motivate patients to use eHealth intervention and to tailor strategies better to the needs of users. Trial registration: Netherlands Trial Register (NTR): NTR4329 . Registered December 20th, 2013.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalBMC Musculoskeletal Disorders
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 18 May 2017

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