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VidaTalk™ patient communication application "opened up" communication between nonvocal ICU patients and their family

Background: To explore family members' perceptions of an electronic communication application, VidaTalk™, their communication experience, and emotional reactions to communication with mechanically ventilated patients in the intensive care units. Methods: Qualitative phase of a mixed-methods study nested within a randomised controlled trial. Family members in the intervention group received the VidaTalk™ app as a communication aid during their intensive care stay. Seven family members participated in 18 semi-structured email interviews after discharge between May and December 2018. Interviews were analysed using qualitative content analysis. Families were recruited in multiple intensive care units located in one university hospital. Communication experience with the VidaTalk™ and emotions while communicating with the patient. Basic qualitative description and constant comparative techniques were used to code and analyse the text using ATLAS_ti (Version 7.5.18). Findings: The VidaTalk™ opened up family-patient communication by allowing clear communication and expanding communication content. Family members felt happy and thankful to communicate with the patient. They also expressed feelings of relief and less frustration and less stress while communicating with the patient.​ On the other hand, the patient's ability to express their worries or anxiety sometimes made families feel sad or distressed. The VidaTalk™ was helpful for family-patient communication. Conclusions: The VidaTalk™ may help families reduce psychological distress. However, ​expanded communication with critically ill patients may cause other negative feelings.

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Type of Reference
Type of Work
Journal article
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Journal Titles
Intensive & Critical Care Nursing
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