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Computer Intervention Impact on Psychosocial Adaptation of Rural Women With Chronic Conditions

Weinert, Clarann; Cudney, Shirley; Comstock, Bryan; Bansal, Aasthaa

doi: 10.1097/NNR.0b013e3181ffbcf2

Background: Adapting to living with chronic conditions is a life-long psychosocial challenge.

Objective: The purpose of this study was to report the effect of a computer intervention on the psychosocial adaptation of rural women with chronic conditions.

Methods: A two-group study design was used with 309 middle-aged, rural women who had chronic conditions, randomized into either a computer-based intervention or a control group. Data were collected at baseline, at the end of the intervention, and 6 months later on the psychosocial indicators of social support, self-esteem, acceptance of illness, stress, depression, and loneliness.

Results: The impact of the computer-based intervention was statistically significant for five of six of the psychosocial outcomes measured, with a modest impact on social support. The largest benefits were seen in depression, stress, and acceptance.

Discussion: The women-to-women intervention resulted in positive psychosocial responses that have the potential to contribute to successful management of illness and adaptation. Other components of adaptation to be examined are the impact of the intervention on illness management and quality of life and the interrelationships among environmental stimuli, psychosocial response, and illness management.

Clarann Weinert, SC, PhD, RN, FAAN, is Professor, College of Nursing, Montana State University, Bozeman.

Shirley Cudney, MA, RN, is Associate Professor (Retired), College of Nursing, Montana State University, Bozeman.

Bryan Comstock, MS, is Biostatistician, Department of Biostatistics, University of Washington, Seattle.

Aasthaa Bansal, MS, is Biostatistics Research Assistant, Department of Biostatistics, University of Washington, Seattle.

Accepted for publication September 28, 2010.

The Women to Women Conceptual Model for Adaptation to Chronic Illness was designed to guide the Women on Women Project-Phase III. The model was developed by Drs. Clarann Weinert, Wade Hill, Charlene Winters, Therese Sullivan, Lynn Paul, Deborah Haynes, Elizabeth Kinion, and Susan Luparell and Pat Oriet, BSN, Shirley Cudney, MA, and Amber Spring, MS.

Funding was received from the National Institutes of Health, the National Institute of Nursing Research (grant no. 2R01NR007908-04A1), and the NIH/National Center for Research Resources (grant no. UL1RR025014).

Corresponding author: Clarann Weinert, SC, PhD, RN, FAAN, College of Nursing, Montana State University, PO Box 173560, Bozeman, MT 59717 (e-mail:

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.