A Multi - Disciplinary Research Collaboration.

Interdisciplinary Ugandan perspectives on computerized intervention implementation for child survivors of severe malaria: A qualitative analysis

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Severe malaria (SM) is the leading cause of pediatric cognitive impairment in sub-Saharan Africa. Computerized Cognitive Rehabilitation Therapy (CCRT), a promising intervention for children suffering from SM related cognitive delay, targets areas impacted by the disease (memory, attention, and executive function), but has yet to be implemented for daily use. This paper explores the perspectives of Ugandan professionals regarding CCRT implementation in the academic setting of Uganda.

METHODS:

A qualitative descriptive approach was taken to conduct interviews with Ugandan professionals directly or indirectly aware of an ongoing CCRT intervention trial. Eight individuals were consented and interviewed. Responses were analyzed thematically. Question topics included knowledge of malaria and CCRT, perspectives on implementation feasibility, and experience engaging in a global collaborative research endeavor.

RESULTS:

Facilitators included perceived value and environment. Potential barriers were geography and resource availability. Perceived value is seen, expected, and/or hoped for outcomes by adults involved in the child’s development. Environment speaks to the internal environment of the CCRT program as well as the external environment of the school setting. Geography presents as a barrier due to the difficulty of accessing CCRT in rural settings. Resource availability was a consistently identified barrier to implementation including aspects of technological, financial, and understanding deficits leading to difficulties in CCRT dissemination.

CONCLUSION:

Results demonstrate optimism and hope of Ugandan professionals for CCRT in children who have survived SM. Professionals identify and prioritize needs for implementation uniquely, pointing to the value in interdisciplinary collaboration to ensure effective implementation of CCRT.

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