An important and challenging part of living with cancer relates to the repeated visits to the hospital. Since how patients cope between these post-diagnostic visits depends partly on the information and support received from their physician during the visits, it is important to make the most of them. Recent findings reinforce the importance of training not only the health care professionals in communication skills, but providing patients with support in communication as well. Delivering such supportive interventions online can have potential benefits in terms of accessibility, cost-effectiveness, and ability to tailor information to personal needs. However, problems with attrition (dropout, non-usage) during the test phase and poor uptake after implementation are frequently reported. The marginal level of engagement of the patient as end user seems to play a role in this. Therefore, recent research suggests integrating theory-based development methods with methods that promote involvement of the patient at an early stage. This paper describes a participatory protocol, used to let patients guide a theory-informed development process.
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