After developing and testing a prototype with help from focus groups of patients, caregivers, and experts, the team decided to use a "cognitive restructuring" framework in the video. Cognitive restructuring is an approach that instills adaptive beliefs such as greater perceived control, greater confidence in one's abilities, and more realistic assessment of failures prior to attempting changes in actual behavior. This approach has been used successfully in intervention trials for exercise, fear of falling, and doctor/patient communication.
"Hope in Sight" features three real people with low vision and it vividly portrays how they moved emotionally from initial devastation and despair to acceptance and adjustment. The use of low vision devices by these people was emphasized to illustrate and underscore the adjustments and adaptations that have enabled them to maintain independence.
The video, which eventually won the 2003 Telly Award, also featured a virtual home to which adaptations were made and an educational section on the AMD process itself.
To determine the impact of the video, the research team divided 151 low vision patients into two groupsthose (the intervention group) who viewed the video, and those who did not (the control group). They then interviewed each subject three times: before the video viewing, two weeks after, and three months after. The interviews consisted of questions about emotional responses to AMD, knowledge of their disease and use of assistive devices.
The team discovered that subjects who viewed the video had significantly higher scores than the control subjects on knowledge about their disease and assistive
Contact: Patti Jacobs
Schepens Eye Research Institute