Purpose/Objectives: To determine the feasibility of Web-based, multisite data collection using electronic instruments and the feasibility, acceptability, and usability of that data collection method to parents of children with cancer.
Design: Prototype development and feasibility study.
Setting Three Children's Oncology Group centers in the United States.
Sample: 20 parents of children with cancer who made a treatment decision within the previous six months.
Methods: Eight instruments were translated from print to electronic format and deployed using a secure Web-based server. Parents completed printed versions of two of the instruments to assess comparability of the two formats. A post-survey interview focused on parents' computer experiences and the acceptability and ease of use of the instruments.
Main Research Variables: Time to orient parent to Web site, time to complete instruments, investigators' field notes, and postsurvey questionnaire.
Findings: Eighty percent of parents preferred the Web-based data collection and found it at least as easy as completing paper-and-pencil instruments. All parents, regardless of their computer expertise, were comfortable with the electronic data collection system. Statistical analysis demonstrated no evidence of systematic or clinically significant bias.
Conclusions: The Web-based data collection was feasible, reliable, and preferred by most study participants. The authors will use this strategy in future intervention trials of parents making treatment decisions.
Implications for Nursing: Web-based data entry is feasible and acceptable to parents of children with cancer. Future multicenter collaborative studies should develop and test nursing interventions to support parents making treatment decisions.