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Print version ISSN 1134-928X


JENARO, Cristina et al. Efficacy of text messaging for health care in the elderly. Gerokomos [online]. 2016, vol.27, n.2, pp.42-47. ISSN 1134-928X.

Objectives: This study aims to: 1) Implement an intervention using a Text Messaging system to motivate an aging population toward healthy living, and 2) determine differential efficacy of text messaging vs. attendance-based intervention, to increase healthy behaviors and reduce health risk factors. Methodology: a mixed quantitative-qualitative study which involved 50 people over 60 years, with a pre-experimental comparison group design to test the differential efficacy of a traditional intervention vs. based on text messaging. A SWOT analysis during the implementation of focus groups was also utilized. The intervention consisted of text messaging for a month with messages related to health, while the comparison group attended classroom sessions in which health topics were addressed once a week during that month. Both groups have filled in a questionnaire on perceived changes after intervention. They have also participated in the focus group. Results: Both groups of informants reported having improved several health behaviors and have increased awareness on healthy living. The results are slightly higher for the classroom group. Conclusions: The intervention based on text messaging is a promising and efficient strategy for promoting healthy habits in older people.

Keywords : aging; health; text messaging; intervention studies.

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