Assessment of a digital intervention program with Holocaust survivors

Ella Cohn-Schwartz, Ittay Mannheim, Lian Meiry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: This study evaluated a digital intervention program with aging Holocaust survivors. Participants received a tablet device and were coupled with a volunteer who assisted them to use the tablet. The study aimed to assess which characteristics of the Holocaust survivors are linked with more frequent use of digital communication at the end of the program. Methods: Information was collected by telephone interviews with 91 survivors before and 54 after participating in the program. We combined this data with digital usage data from the tablets. Regression models examined the characteristics of Holocaust survivors that were related to higher frequency of using digital communication technologies during the intervention. Results: The Holocaust survivors expressed high satisfaction with the program. They increased their frequency of using digital communication technologies—text correspondence and video chats with friends and family. Regressions showed that Holocaust survivors who reported increased digital communication were characterized at the start of the intervention by having fewer post-traumatic stress symptoms, higher levels of flourishing (reflecting a more meaningful life and higher well-being), being lonelier, and were also more satisfied with the program at follow-up. Conclusion: The pilot program benefited the aging Holocaust survivors. Further programs should be developed to increase the digital communication of vulnerable older populations, such as trauma survivors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)587-594
Number of pages8
JournalAging and Mental Health
Volume28
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2024

Keywords

  • Tablets
  • contacts
  • digital technology
  • post-trauma
  • volunteers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Gerontology
  • Psychiatric Mental Health

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