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Int J Med Inform. 2007 Nov-Dec;76(11-12):829-35. Epub 2006 Nov 17.

Using digital videos displayed on personal digital assistants (PDAs) to enhance patient education in clinical settings.

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Department of Practice & Policy, The University of London School of Pharmacy, London, UK.



To evaluate the effects of using an audiovisual animation (i.e., digital video) displayed on a personal digital assistant (PDA) for patient education in a clinical setting.


Quasi-experimental study of a prospective technology intervention conducted in an outpatient infectious diseases clinic at an academic medical center. Subjects responded to questions immediately before, immediately after, and 4-6 weeks after watching a digital video on a PDA. Outcome measures include participant knowledge of disease, knowledge of medications, and knowledge of adherence behaviors; attitudes toward the video and PDA; self-reported adherence; and practicality of the intervention.


Fifty-one English-speaking adults who were initiating or taking medications for the treatment of HIV/AIDS participated in the study. At visit one, statistically significant improvements in knowledge of disease (p<0.005; paired t-test), knowledge of medications (p<0.005; paired t-test), and knowledge of adherence behaviors (p<0.05; ANOVA) were measured after participants watched the PDA-based video. At visit two (4-6 weeks later), statistically significant improvements in self-reported adherence to the medication regimens (p<0.005; paired t-test) were reported. Participants liked the PDA-based video and indicated that it was an appropriate medium for learning, regardless of their baseline literacy skills. The video education process was estimated to take 25 min of participant time and was viewed in both private and semi-private locations.


Technology-assisted education using a digital video delivered via PDA is a convenient and potentially powerful way to deliver health messages. The intervention was implemented efficiently with participants of a variety of ages and educational levels, and in a range of locations within clinical environments. Additional study of this methodology is warranted.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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