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Delivering Evidence-based Behavioral Health Care to the Underserved

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Sickle cell disease (SCD) is an inherited chronic multi-organ system disorder that affects approximately 100,000 individuals in the United States, mostly belonging to minority, underserved populations. Pain is the hallmark symptom of SCD. Many people living with SCD suffer from daily, chronic pain as well recurrent acute pain episodes that require medical attention. Pain in SCD is almost exclusively treated with opioid medication, despite the limited effectiveness and negative side-effects associated with long-term opioid use. Thus, there is a pressing need for evidence-based, widely accessible, and scalable behavioral interventions for treating pain in this population. To address this gap in care, we are proposing a computerized cognitive behavioral therapy (cCBT) program that patients can access on their smartphones or tablet computers, to learn new coping skills to manage stress and pain. We are working with stakeholders to make a cCBT program that is “cool”, engaging, and culturally relevant to SCD patients of varying literacy levels and learning styles. The cCBT program, called SMART CBT, will be a customized multimedia e-Learning experience that delivers CBT through relatable video vignettes, narratives, exercises, and quizzes. This is a tool that patients living with a chronic illness will want to use and will benefit from. 


Nov 30 2016

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  • Charles Jonassaint
  • Jude Jonassaint
  • Frank Lubsey

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