174399 Enhancing middle school health educators' professional competency and healthy lifestyles through eHealth technology in Taiwan

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Chieh-Hsing Liu , Department of Health Education, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei City 106,Taiwan (R.O.C.), Taiwan
Li-Ling Liao , Department of Health Education, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, Taiwan
Shy-Yang Chiou , Food Science, National Ilan University(Taiwan), Ilan, Taiwan
Han-Wen Yen , Department of Health Promotion and Health Education, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, Taiwan
The goal of the study aimed to target middle school health educators to establish an eHealth intervention and to evaluate its effectiveness. It was hoped that this intervention can strengthen professional competency, healthy behavior intentions, and healthy lifestyles through enhancing their predisposing factors, enablingfactors, and reinforcing factors. The eHealth intervention was based on Health Belief Model, Social Cognitive Theory, Life Skill, Stages of Change Theory, Social Support Theory, and Communication/Persuasion Matrix, and it also incorporated the functions and strategies of the eHealth interactive technology, including peer support communities, tailored education, and professionally facilitated education and support program.

A nonequivalent experiment control group design was used with the middle school health educators of health promoting schools appointed by the Ministry of Education in Academic Year 2005 in Taiwan. The experimental group (n=53) received two months of the eHealth intervention, while the control group (n=65) didn't receive any other types of education methods as the intervention. A closed-ended pretest-posttest questionnaire was the instrument used to evaluate the outcome effects.

The result supported the fact that the eHealth intervention can produce a positive increase in middle school health educators' work-conditions perception, health beliefs, life skills, self-efficacy, and behavior intention in relation to health behavior; however, the result didn't show significant improvement in social support, professional competency, and healthy lifestyles. According to the process evaluation, the most users expressed that they like the eHealth system, and the intervention indeed helped them promote their health-related attitude, life skills, social support, self-efficacy, work-conditions perception, teaching competency and the willingness to follow the directions of the program in the near future.

Finally, this eHealth intervention can provide a valuable reference for public health policy-makers and health researchers in carrying out the health educators' health promotion program through eHealth technology.

Learning Objectives:
1. Articulate the procedure for assessing the health needs and media interests of the target audience. 2. Develop an eHealth intervention which is based on health-related model and theory, as well as incorporated the functions and strategies of the interactive technology. 3. Evaluate an eHealth intervention effectively and efficiently.

Keywords: Health, Information Technology

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the principal investigator of this study
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.