VIH-TAVIE™: Tailored Virtual Support for Better Self-Management of Antiretroviral Therapy

José Côté*, Research Chair in Innovative Nursing Practices, Research Centre at the Centre Hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal, Montreal, Canada
Geneviève Rouleau*, Research Chair in Innovative Nursing Practices, Research Centre at the Centre Hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal, Montreal, Canada
Pilar Ramirez-garcia, Faculty of Nursing, University of Montreal, Montreal, Canada
Yann-gaël Guéhéneuc, Canada Research Chair on Software Patterns and Patterns of Software, Montreal, Canada
Gaston Godin, Canada Research Chair on Behavior and Health, Laval University, Montreal, Canada
Annick Hernandez, Centre d'expertise numérique pour la recherche (CEN-R), Montreal, Canada

Track: Research
Presentation Topic: Web 2.0 approaches for behaviour change, public health and biosurveillance
Presentation Type: Tabletop Demo (Expo Hall)
Submission Type: Single Presentation

Last modified: 2012-09-12

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Background: The VIH-TAVIE™ (VIH – Traitement Assistance Virtuelle Infirmière et Enseignement or HIV – Treatment Virtual Nurse Assistance and Teaching) intervention is an innovative healthcare application that employs information technology as a means of access and learning to help people living with HIV (PLHIV) adhere more effectively to their daily antiretroviral treatment.
Objective: The presentation will serve to describe the VIH-TAVIE™ application and demonstrate how it works.
Method: With the help of experts in the fields of media arts (e.g., media consultant, graphic designer) and computer sciences, a group of health professionals (nurses, pharmacists, nutritionists, doctors) created the TAVIE computing platform, which supports the VIH-TAVIE™ application and allows developing other tailored virtual interventions quickly and efficiently.
Results: The VIH-TAVIE™ application is composed of four computer sessions each 20-30 minutes long, in which the user interacts with an animated ‘virtual’ nurse. The nurse guides the individual through a process of learning about the aptitudes required to optimize treatment adherence. The aim of VIH-TAVIE™ is to allow PLHIV to consolidate their self-motivation, self-observation, problem-solving, emotional-control and social-interaction capacities. Together, these enable PLHIV to incorporate the therapeutic regimen into their daily routine, to cope with side-effects from the medication, to handle situations or circumstances that could interfere with medication intake, to interact with health professionals, and to mobilize social support. The virtual nurse also provides personalized teaching, such as by giving examples of other PLHIV who managed to handle situations similar to those faced by the user, as well as feedback and positive reinforcement on progress made and skills acquired. Overall, VIH-TAVIE™ comprises about 130 pages, 140 short video clips, 40 animated features and 55 PDF files (e.g., summaries of different skills, answers to frequently asked questions, advice on coping with side-effects). It also provides the user with consolidation tools (e.g., a logbook for recording adverse side-effects). The TAVIE platform is endowed with a Content Management System with some 20 algorithms set up to “tailor” responses according to user profile and information submitted by the user at each session. The relation and interaction between user and virtual nurse makes for a more dynamic experience than is the case with ordinary general information websites insensitive to user profile. The database included in the platform allows keeping track of how resources are used (e.g., PDF files downloaded, video clips and web pages viewed, time spent on each page), which facilitates evaluating the intervention’s effectiveness with respect to the target group and makes it easier to adjust and update content accordingly.
Conclusion: The ultimate aim of the VIH-TAVIE™ project is to make support available to PLHIV at all times and at their convenience so that they may develop the skills needed to meet the challenges inherent to their health condition.

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