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Omani Doctor Get Best Doctoral Dissertation Award from UCLA

Omani Doctor Get Best Doctoral Dissertation Award from UCLA

Omani Doctor Get Best Doctoral Dissertation Award from UCLA


Dr. Yusra bint Suliman Al Nasiri, an Assistant Lecturer at Oman College of Health Sciences in the Ministry of Health (MOH) got recently the Doctor of Philosophy degree in Nursing from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) in the United States of America (USA). She also has been got the best doctoral dissertation award from the UCLA this year.

The general idea of the study is developing a smartphone application for parents of children with Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) in Oman in order to improve their children’s Health-Related Quality Of Life (HRQOL).

The dissertation specifically focused on utilizing smart-phone technology to develop a Parents Educational Intervention Program (PEIP) for improving parents’ knowledge, self-efficiency, and health-related quality of life in children with SCD in Oman.

Dr. Al Nasiri designed a comprehensive program (PEIP) for the parents of children with Sickle Cell Disease in Oman, as well as she tested the intervention for its effectiveness to improve parents' knowledge about SCD, their ability to deal disease symptoms at home and on improving the quality of life of children with SCD. 

By using the (PEIP) program, this study is considered as the first study that assessed the parents' self-efficiency on dealing disease symptoms at home. It also the first study that targeted all aspects of health-related quality of life together (the physical, the emotional, the social and the cognitive), where the previous studies had only focused on pain (the physical aspect). However, this study focused on the impact of SCD on all aspects of health (the emotional, social, cognitive), in addition to the physical aspect. It provided a comprehensive guideline for parents on how to improve those aspects to improve their children’s quality of life.In addition, the study utilized smart-phone technology to develop the program; making it the first study that utilized smart-phone technology for delivering a high-quality educational intervention. The researcher hopes to design a professional smartphone application that has more advanced features for the parents, as well as for identifying the vital signs of SCD pain in the future.

For the research, Dr. Yusra was able to develop the content to be included in the application and design the basic features for the application.  She is planning, in future, to develop an interactive app with specific and advanced features, where enabling the patient to assess the pain, treatment of light pain remotely, communication with health care providers for early symptom management, live chat with parents and interactive games for children. Furthermore, the possibility to connect the app to the Public Authority for Civil Defence & Ambulance in the Sultanate for use in cases of emergency. Taking into account the special needs category, a signs language will be added to the application.This application will serve a large cross-section of society, especially the SCD patients and their parents. School and nurseries teachers will also benefit from this application as they interact with a large number of students affected with SCD. The application will also serve the community members in raising the level of awareness, which may enhance the importance of premarital testing.