Optimizing a digital intervention for managing blood pressure in stroke patients using a diverse sample: Integrating the person-based approach and patient and public involvement.
Rai T., Morton K., Roman C., Doogue R., Rice C., Williams M., Schwartz C., Velardo C., Tarassenko L., Yardley L., McManus RJ., Hinton L.
BACKGROUND: Having a stroke or transient ischaemic attack increases the risk of a subsequent one, especially with high blood pressure (BP). Home-based BP management can be effective at maintaining optimal BP. OBJECTIVE: To describe the optimization of a digital intervention for stroke patients and the value of participant diversity, using the person-based approach (PBA) and integral patient and public involvement (PPI). SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: Stroke patients recruited from primary care and community settings, and health-care professionals in primary care, in England and Ireland. DESIGN: Three linked qualitative studies conducted iteratively to develop an intervention using the PBA, with integral PPI. INTERVENTION: The BP: Together intervention, adapted from existing BP self-monitoring interventions, is delivered via mobile phone or web interface to support self-monitoring of BP at home. It alerts patients and their clinicians when a change in antihypertensive medication is needed. FINDINGS: Feedback from a diverse range of participants identified potential barriers, which were addressed to improve the intervention accessibility, feasibility and persuasiveness. Easy-to-read materials were developed to improve usability for patients with aphasia and lower literacy. The importance of including family members who support patient care was also highlighted. Feedback messages regarding medication change were refined to ensure usefulness for patients and clinicians. DISCUSSION: Input from PPI alongside qualitative research with a diverse study sample allowed the creation of a simple and equitable BP management intervention for stroke patients. PATIENT INVOLVEMENT: Two PPI co-investigators contributed to design, conduct of study, data interpretation and manuscript preparation; community PPI sessions informed early planning. Study participants were stroke patients and family members.