Phase 2 of 3: Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial


The pilot randomized controlled trial (RCT) was completed in March 2015. Funding was recently received from The Arthritis Society for a definitive RCT, with recruitment starting January 2017.

Principal Investigator: Stinson, J.

Co-Investigator(s): Bell, M, Kaufman, M, Spiegel, L, Luca, N, Amaria, K, Forgeron, P, Ahola Kohut, S

Funded by: Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR); 2013-2014

Background: Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) is a common chronic childhood illness associated with difficulties in social and role functioning as well as physical and emotional symptoms that can negatively impact health-related quality of life (HRQL). Greater involvement in self-management could prevent worsening of the disease and symptoms, and facilitate successful transition to adult care. Providing peer support via Internet interventions (Skype) is an innovative approach to improve the accessibility and acceptability of self-management programs for youth with JIA.

Objective: To determine the feasibility of the “iPeer2Peer (iP2P) JIA support program” on health outcomes and HRQL of adolescents with JIA using a phased approach

Design: A waitlist randomized control trial with a sample size of 40 participants will be used to test the feasibility and impact of the VP2P support program intervention for adolescents with JIA.

Procedure: Participants are being recruited from the paediatric rheumatology clinic at The Hospital for Sick Children and randomized into one of two online peer support intervention groups (experimental and control groups). The study takes place over two months and online questionnaires will be completed at baseline and study endpoint.

Arthritis Foundation Collaboration – iPeer2Peer: Arthritis

Collaboration with the Arthritis Foundation in the United States was formed in June 2016. The program was adapted by the iOuch Pain Lab for an American audience (i.e. different healthcare systems) and a team of mentor training facilitators conducted on-site training with mentors from across the United States in August 2016. The iPeer2Peer: Arthritis program will be delivered through the Arthritis Foundation.

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