Improving comprehension, recall and attention using multimedia-informed assent among pediatric oncology patients: A comparative randomized controlled trial

Improving comprehension, recall and attention using multimedia-informed assent among pediatric oncology patients: A comparative randomized controlled trial
Psychosocial and Supportive Care: Research Article
Passara Wongthai, Apichat Photia, Chanchai Traivaree, Chalinee Monsereenusorn, Nawachai Lertvivatpong, Khemika Khemakanok Sudnawa, Piya Rujkijyanont
Pediatric Blood & Cancer, 25 May 2022
Abstract
Background
Assent should be obtained in all children involved in research in keeping with their level of maturity. Traditional assent forms contain too much information and are difficult to read. The study aimed to identify an effective tool to enhance children’s comprehension during the assent process and focused on those with cancer who are likely more engaged in research involving greater than minimal risk.
Methods
In all, 116 children with cancer were randomized to receive either a paper-based assent document or a multimedia-based assent document. Open-ended and multiple-choice questions were used to assess comprehension and recall. Time spent on the documents and children’s behavior during the assent process was recorded to determine their attention and satisfaction.
Results
Children randomized to a multimedia-based assent document achieved significant higher comprehension and recall assessment scores (p-values <.001). The high score achievement significantly correlated with the child’s age with adjusted odds ratio (OR) of 1.90 (p-value <.001; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.35–2.66) for comprehension assessment and 1.59 (p-value .001; 95% CI: 1.20–2.12) for recall assessment. Children randomized to a multimedia-based assent document had significant longer time spent on the document (p-value .001) with less numbers of inattention (p-value <.001) and expressed more signs of enjoyment during the assent process (p-values <.001).
Conclusion
Multimedia-based assent document successfully enhanced comprehension, recall, and attention with more satisfaction compared with a traditional paper-based document among children with cancer. This approach may be considered as an alternative format for children engaging in research involving greater than minimal risk.

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