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Using participatory action research for heart self care amongst indigenous patients

Bronwyn Fredericks, Robyn A. Clark, Mick Adams, John Atherton, Jo Wu, Jill Howie Esquivel, Kathy Dracup, Natahlia Buitendyk


This paper describes the use of participatory action research in the development and trialling of an iPad application designed to provide monitoring and self-care for Indigenous Australians with heart failure. The pilot study research involved health experts, an IT team and Indigenous heart failure patients in three cycles of development and critical reflection. The researchers describe the steps they took to ensure community participation and ownership of the project, which is based on evidence that IT-supported health education can be successful in decreasing re-hospitalisation and improving self-management skills. This participatory action research pilot project is the first demonstration that an iPad application can be developed to provide health care support for Indigenous Australian heart failure patients. 


Heart Failure, iPad, App, self-care, wellbeing, Indigenous, Australia

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