Sara Douglas on the Benefits of a Distance Caregiver

January 9, 2014
Sara L. Douglas, PhD, RN

Sara L. Douglas, PhD, RN, discusses the results of a pilot study that examined the benefit of having a distance caregiver (a relative) present via live video while the cancer patient met with doctors.

Sara L. Douglas, PhD, RN, associate professor, Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing, Case Western Reserve University, discusses the results of a pilot study that examined the benefit of having a distance caregiver (a relative) present via live video while the cancer patient met with doctors.

Douglas says the study showed a statistically significant and clinically significant reduction of anxiety for the distance caregivers before the meeting versus after the meeting. Before the meeting, Douglas says the distance caregiver was given a chance to talk with their relative and tour the facility. After the meeting, the distance caregivers were given a chance to talk privately with the patient and other family members or with nurses on staff, Douglas says.

Local caregivers were also relieved to be able to share the experience with the distance caregiver, Douglas says.

Douglas says the pilot study will be expanded to a larger group of patients.