Mobile technology–based asthma medication adherence interventions can be targeted to children during periods of high risk, including the transition from hospital to home or when refill behavior suggests declining adherence. Our objective was to develop insight into parent use of mobile technology and their preferences for a mobile technology–based asthma intervention.
By using qualitative methods, 20 interviews of parents of children with asthma were conducted. The open-ended, semistructured interview guides included questions about current mobile technology use, barriers to controller medication adherence, and preferences for methods and content of a mobile technology–based asthma intervention. Using grounded theory methodology, investigators coded the transcripts and identified emerging themes.
Twenty parents completed interviews. Half of the children were 7 to 12 years old. Eighty percent had public insurance. Sixty-five percent had a previous hospitalization. Three major themes were identified: chronic disease management assistance, distinct preferences for risk communication, and electronic reachability. Chronic disease management assistance included parents recognizing that busy lifestyles contribute to adherence challenges and welcoming a program to assist them. Distinct preferences for risk communication included a preference for 2-way communication via text message or phone call at least monthly. Under the theme of electronic reachability, all enrolled parents had smartphones and used them daily.
Parents of children with asthma are open to communicating with asthma providers through mobile technology. This information can be used to inform the development of mobile technology–based interventions to improve care for children with asthma during periods of high risk, including the transition from hospital to home.