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Little is known about emotional quality-of-life in paediatric heart disease in low- and middle-income countries where the prevalence of uncorrected lesions is high. Research on emotional quality-of-life and its predictors in these settings is key to planning interventions.
Ten-year retrospective cross-sectional study of children aged 6–17 years with uncorrected congenital or acquired heart disease in 12 low- and middle-income countries was conducted. Emotional functioning score of the PedsQL TM 4.0 generic core scale and data on patient-reported limitation in sports participation were collected via in-person interview and analysed using regression analyses.
Ninety-four children reported mean emotional functioning scores of 71.94 (SD 25.32) [95% CI 66.75–77.13] with lower scores independently associated with having a parent with a chronic illness or who had died (p = 0.005), having less than three siblings (p = 0.007), and reporting a subjective limitation in carrying an item equivalent to a 4 lb load (p = 0.021). Patient-reported limitation in sports participation at least “sometimes” was present in 69% and was independently associated with experiencing symptoms at least once a month (p < 0.001).
Some of the factors which were associated with better emotional quality-of-life were similar to those identified in previous studies in patients with corrected defects. Patient-reported limitation in sports participation is common. In addition to corrective surgery and exercise, numerous other interventions which are practicable during surgical missions might improve emotional quality-of-life.
Research mentor training is a valuable professional development activity. Options for training customization (by delivery mode, dosage, content) are needed to address the many critical attributes of effective mentoring relationships and to support mentors in different institutional settings.
We conducted a pilot randomized controlled trial to evaluate a hybrid mentor training approach consisting of an innovative, 90-minute, self-paced, online module (Optimizing the Practice of Mentoring, OPM) followed by workshops based on the Entering Mentoring (EM) curriculum. Mentors (n = 59) were randomized to intervention or control arms; the control condition was receipt of a two-page mentoring tip sheet. Surveys (pre, post, 3-month follow up) and focus groups assessed training impact (self-appraised knowledge, skills, behavior change) and participants’ perceptions of the blended training model.
The intervention (∼6.5 hours) produced significant improvements in all outcomes, including skills gains on par with those reported previously for the 8-hour EM model. Knowledge gains and intention-to-change mentoring practices were realized after completion of OPM and augmented by the in-person sessions. Mentors valued the synergy of the blended learning format, noting the unique strengths of each modality and specific benefits to completing a foundational online module before in-person engagement.
Findings from this pilot trial support the value of e-learning approaches, both as standalone curricula or as a component of hybrid implementation models, for the professional development of research mentors.
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