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The Electronic Surviving Cancer Competently Intervention Program-a Psychosocial Digital Health Intervention for English- and Spanish-Speaking Parents of Children With Cancer: Protocol for Randomized Controlled Trial.

BACKGROUND: The psychosocial needs and risks of children with cancer and their families are well-documented including increased risk of parental distress, posttraumatic stress, and anxiety. There is a critical need to provide evidence-based psychosocial care to parents and caregivers of children with cancer. Digital health interventions are important to address many barriers to in-person intervention delivery but are not widely used in pediatric psychosocial cancer care. The COVID-19 pandemic has reinforced the need for flexible, acceptable, and accessible psychosocial digital health interventions. The Electronic Surviving Cancer Competently Intervention Program (eSCCIP) is an innovative digital health intervention for parents and caregivers of children with cancer, delivered through a combination of self-guided web-based content and supplemented by 3 telehealth follow-up sessions with a trained telehealth guide. A Spanish language adaptation of eSCCIP, El Programa Electronico de Intervencion para Superar Cancer Competentemente (eSCCIP-SP), has been developed. The self-guided web-based cores of eSCCIP/eSCCIP-SP are a mix of didactic video content, multifamily video discussion groups featuring parents of children with cancer, and hands-on web-based activities.

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study is to test eSCCIP/eSCCIP-SP in a multisite randomized controlled trial, compared to an internet-based education control condition consisting of information specifically focused on concerns relevant to parents and caregivers of children with cancer.

METHODS: Using a randomized controlled clinical trial design, 350 eligible parents and caregivers of children with cancer will be randomly assigned to the intervention (eSCCIP/eSCCIP-SP) or an education control condition. Data will be collected at 3 time points: preintervention (prior to randomization), immediately post intervention (after 6 weeks), and at a 3-month follow-up (from baseline). Participants randomized to either condition will receive study material (eSCCIP/eSCCIP-SP intervention or education control website) in English or Spanish, based on the primary language spoken in the home and participant preference.

RESULTS: The primary study end point is a reduction in acute distress from baseline to postintervention, with secondary end points focused on reductions in symptoms of posttraumatic stress and anxiety, and improvements in coping self-efficacy and cognitive coping. An additional exploratory aim will be focused on implementation strategies and potential costs and cost-savings of eSCCIP/eSCCIP-SP, laying the groundwork for future trials focused on dissemination and implementation, stepped-care models, and intervention refinement.

CONCLUSIONS: This trial will provide necessary data to evaluate the efficacy of eSCCIP/eSCCIP-SP. This intervention has the potential to be an easily scalable and highly impactful psychosocial treatment option for parents and caregivers of children with cancer.



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