Dana L. Suskind, MD
Section of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery
Director, Pediatric Cochlear Implantation Program
5841 S. Maryland Ave., MC1035
Chicago, IL 60637
Phone: (773) 702-1865
Fax: (773) 702-6809
In an effort to address these issues, Dr. Suskind designed a parent-directed, educational intervention called Project ASPIRE (Achieving Superior Parental Involvement for Rehabilitative Excellence). The goal of Project ASPIRE is to educate and empower parents so they can help their children reach their listening, speaking and understanding potential. Project ASPIRE is an interactive, multimedia DVD program conducted in a group setting that utilizes a "best-practices" curriculum intended to increase parental understanding of the components necessary for a child's post-implant success, to demonstrate their own importance to that success and to supply the knowledge and skills to help assure that success.
The weekly interactive DVD program will include an animated introduction, parent-child videos which demonstrate methods ‘in action,' relevant songs to assist with concept recall and a simple video game to solidify the lesson. The central characters of the DVD include Star and Stella, a mother and her daughter who has received cochlear implants. Additionally, to facilitate the needs of this diverse population, the animated modules can be translated into any language and the parent-child videos will include families of diverse ethnicity and children at different ages.
A key element to the success of this program is participation and engagement of the parents. In order to enhance participation, professionals leading the sessions will utilize a motivational interview technique (MIT) at the beginning of each group session. This brief intervention (5-10 min) has been shown, in psychotherapy literature, to increase parental motivation, attendance, and adherence to treatment.
Project ASPIRE programs have already been examined for factors such as cultural appropriateness, enjoyment and the clarity and ease of use of the module media content including the animated characters, storyboards, music and games. During the final development process, each component will undergo beta testing for acceptability, feasibility, comprehensibility (health literacy) and educational effectiveness. Modifications of the interactive multimedia components will be ongoing based on results of the testing.