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JMIR Formative Research (JFR) (a sister journal of J Med Internet Res (JMIR) and JMIR mHealth & uHealth, the leading eHealth and mHealth journals by impact factor) publishes peer-reviewed, openly accessible papers containing results from process evaluations, feasibility/pilot studies and other kinds of formative research and preliminary results. While the original focus was on the design of medical and health-related research and technology innovations, JFR publishes studies from all areas of medical and health research.
Formative research is research that occurs before a program is designed and implemented, or while a program is being conducted. Formative research can help
Many funding agencies will expect some sort of pilot/feasibility/process evaluation before funding a larger study such as a Randomized Controlled Trial (RCT).
Formative research should be an integral part of developing programs or adapting programs, and should be used while the program is on-going to help refine and improve program activities. Thus, formative evaluation can and should also occur in form of a process evaluation alongside a summative evaluation such as a RCT.
This journal fills an important gap in the academic journals landscape, as it publishes sound and peer-reviewed formative research that is criticial for investigators to apply for further funding, but that is usually not published in outcomes-focussed medical journals aiming for impact and generalizability.
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Background: A blockchain is a digitised, decentralised, distributed public ledger; a shared and synchronised database that records cryptocurrency transactions. Despite the shift towards digital platfo...
Background: A blockchain is a digitised, decentralised, distributed public ledger; a shared and synchronised database that records cryptocurrency transactions. Despite the shift towards digital platforms enabled by Electronic Medical Records (EMRs), demonstrating a will to reform the healthcare sector, health systems face issues including security, interoperability, data fragmentation, timely access to patient data and silos. Application of healthcare blockchains could enable data interoperability, enhancement of precision medicine and reduction in prescription frauds through implementing novel methods in access and patient consent. Objective: To summarise the evidence on the strategies and frameworks utilised to implement blockchains for patient data in healthcare to ensure privacy and improve interoperability and scalability. Methods: A systematic search of MEDLINE/PubMed, Embase, Scopus, ProQuest Technology Collection and Engineering Index (Compendex) has been conducted. Results: This early report summarises key findings from that review for dissemination and discussion. 16 design trade-offs in blockchain implementation have been identified from the existing literature. Conclusions: There is more work that is necessary to thoroughly analyse blockchain trade-off research: While this study was able to identify trade-offs, being able to quantify the mathematical relationships between trade-offs would be of enormous benefit to the field. Clinical Trial: International Prospective Register for Systematic Reviews (PROSPERO) number CRD42018096947.
Background: Background: The unprecedented number of youth engaged in nonmedical use of prescription opioids (PO), as well as the myriad negative consequences of such misuse emphasize the importance of...
Background: Background: The unprecedented number of youth engaged in nonmedical use of prescription opioids (PO), as well as the myriad negative consequences of such misuse emphasize the importance of prevention efforts targeting this public health crisis. Although there are several science-based, interactive, drug-abuse prevention programs focused on preventing use of non-prescription drugs in youth, to our knowledge, there are no science-based, interactive programs focused on the prevention of prescription opioid abuse among adolescents. Objective: Objectives: The aim of this study was to develop and conduct a formative evaluation of a science-based, interactive web-based program focused on the prevention of prescription opioid abuse among adolescents aged 12-17 (Pop4Teens.c4tbh.org). This work was conducted to prepare for a randomized, controlled trial designed to evaluate the effectiveness of Pop4Teens compared to an active control website, JustThinkTwice.com (Drug Enforcement Administration) in impacting knowledge and attitudes about prescription opioids, perceptions of risk associated with abuse of prescription opioids, as well as intentions to use and actual use of prescription opioids. Methods: Methods: We conducted six focus groups with 30 youth (M = 5/group: 12-19 years of age eligible) along a continuum of exposure to POs (in treatment for opioid use disorder, in general treatment for other substance use disorder, prescribed an opioid, and opioid naïve), and writing sessions with 30 youth in treatment for opioid use disorder (12-19) to inform the development of the web-based prevention tool. Feasibility and acceptability of a prototype of the web-based intervention were then assessed through individual feedback sessions with 57 youth (drawn from same populations as focus groups). Results: Results: We successfully completed the development of a web-based prescription opioid abuse prevention program (Pop4Teens). Analyses of focus group transcripts informed the development of the program (e.g., quiz content/format, script writing, story editing). Selected writing session narratives anchored the planned scientific content by lending credibility, as well as informing the development of compelling storylines intended to motivate youth to engage with the program. Feedback session data indicate that the web-based tool could be potentially useful and acceptable. Also, feedback session participants demonstrated significant increases in their knowledge of key topics related to the prevention of prescription opioid abuse after exposure to sections of the web-based program. Conclusions: Conclusions: The opioid crisis is predicted to get worse before it gets better. An effective response will likely require a multi-pronged strategy inclusive of effective evidence-based prevention programs acceptable to, and accessible by, a majority of youth. Clinical Trial: NA
Background: There is a need for evidence-based substance use prevention efforts that target high school-aged youth that are easy to implement and suitable for dissemination in school and community gro...
Background: There is a need for evidence-based substance use prevention efforts that target high school-aged youth that are easy to implement and suitable for dissemination in school and community groups. The Youth Message Development (YMD) program, a 4-lesson, in-person curriculum which develops media literacy and critical thinking skills among youth, has demonstrated evidence of success but is limited by its delivery method and focus on alcohol and smoking. Objective: To adapt the in-person YMD curriculum for youth ages 13-15 to a self-paced, interactive, e-learning format targeting several commonly used substances for implementation and dissemination in a national youth organization and subsequently test the feasibility of this approach. Methods: An iterative process was employed in partnership with the 4-H youth development organization and a technology developer and consisted of six phases: (1) focus groups with the target audience, (2) adaptation to e-learning format, renamed REAL media, (3) pilot testing, (4) program revisions, (5) usability testing, and (6) final revisions. Results: Focus group feedback guided the build of an e-learning prototype of REAL media, which consisted on five online levels and interactive content guided by a mix of narration and on-screen text. Results of a pilot test of the prototype were neutral to positive, and the program was refined based on end-user feedback. An independent usability test indicated that youth 4-H members felt favorably about navigating REAL media, and they reported high self-efficacy in applying skills learned in the program. Additional refinements to the program were made based upon their feedback. Conclusions: The iterative build process involving the end-user from the outset yielded an overall successful technology-driven adaptation of an evidence-based curriculum. This should increase the likelihood of effectively impacting behavioral outcomes as well as uptake within community organizations.