Table of Contents
International Scholarly Research Notices
Volume 2015, Article ID 153723, 12 pages
Research Article

Caregiver Preferences regarding Technology’s Role in Supporting Adolescent Weight Management

1Department of Pediatrics, Stony Brook Children’s Hospital and Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY 11794-8111, USA
2Department of Preventive Medicine, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY, USA

Received 4 August 2015; Accepted 5 October 2015

Academic Editor: Bolanle Adeyemi Ola

Copyright © 2015 Josette M. Bianchi-Hayes et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Health technology provides a wealth of strategies to address chronic health issues, such as childhood obesity. Few studies have assessed parental preferences regarding use of health technology to support weight management for adolescents. Objective. This study determined caregiver beliefs, attitudes, and practices towards using traditional methods and technology-based health applications to address weight management among overweight adolescents. Methods. Self-administered surveys were distributed to caregivers of children ages 11–18 years in Stony Brook Children’s Hospital outpatient offices with a BMI ≥ 85th percentile for age, gender. The data were entered into StudyTrax research platform and analyzed using SAS. Results.  . Mean BMI z-score = 1.95 ± 0.50. Two-thirds (65.8%) of caregivers preferred a weight management program that includes both traditional and technology components. Most parents rated involvement in program development (68.1%), access to content (72.4%) as very important. Those who believed their child’s weight was a problem were more likely than other parents to prefer a program that combined both traditional and technology components. Conclusions. Parents’ perceptions of their child’s weight drove preferences about incorporating technology elements into a weight management program. Future weight management programs should incorporate parental content preferences and be tailored to different age groups.