[CASE] The Dr.Explain software assists The Association of Laryngectomees of Slovenia to make the documentation even more available to patients that have undergone laryngectomy
Crt Kosak tells us how Dr.Explain allows them to add additional features to the publication that were previously not possible and how the software will reduce the costs of republishing their booklet on every update in the nearest future.
DE: Could you please tell us about your Association?
The Association of Laryngectomees of Slovenia (www.dls-slo.si) is operating on the entire territory of Republic Slovenia. The association is representing disabled people, working in public interest and acting on the area of social and medical services. Our organization is actually NGO and is a member of the National Council of Disability Organizations of Slovenia and also has been a member of the European Confederation of Laryngectomees or CEL (Confederation Europeene des Laryhgectomises) until 2017 when it had ceased to exist. Nowadays we are actively cooperating with neighboring countries mostly Austria and Croatia.
The association doesn`t unite only laryngectomized people but also patients that have undergone a surgical procedure in the larynx, throat or oral cavity area and have suffered consequences of bodily disability. Laryngectomy is a surgical procedure where, usually because of a malign tumor, parts ( partial laryngectomy ) or the entire(total laryngectomy) larynx is removed. With the total laryngectomy the entire voice–box is removed so the patient breathes through an opening in the neck (stoma). His airway is therefore entirely separated from nose, mouth and esophagus.
DE: What’s the main aim of the publication?
Tudi brez grla je vredno živeti (Even without a larynx it's worthwhile to live ) is an online version of our publication, written by Dr. Vinko Kambič on throat cancer, laryngectomy and the rehabilitation process after the cancer surgery.
Our publication is the only booklet written in Slovenian language about laryngectomy and is for some therefore the only source of information on rehabilitation after throat cancer surgery.
A lot of patients are often very confused before the cancer surgery and what life and the process of their speech and social rehabilitation will look like after surgery. Therefore alongside with the help of our trustees we offer them the booklet as well. Due to the limited funds, small edition size and the constantly evolving field of speech rehabilitation and the technology development the goal for us was to build a user friendly platform that would allow our members to easily maintain and update the content of our publication without each year using funds for reprinting the booklet with updated content.
DE: Speak about your responsibilities in the Association, please?
My role in the organization is Head of IT. My responsibilities are to maintain and develop our websites, social media sites and android mobile apps, provide advice on purchasing new software, hardware and implement them to improve the rehabilitation process of our members.
DE: Why is user help documentation important to your patients? What will you gain by the project as consequence?
Providing the patient before and after the surgery with the right information either in person or with the help of our documentation was in most cases proven to accelerate the rehabilitation process of the patient. Therefore it is necessary that the content and documentation is accessible in as many ways as possible particularly during the period of COVID-19 where personal visits are restricted to a minimum and most of the consulting is done through telephones, social media sites and video conference systems.
The goal of this project and other future similar projects is to provide documentation about our association, apps and the process of speech rehabilitation to the general public and at the same time also provide our members of the association with a user friendly tool to allow them to update the contents of these sites without any prior knowledge of programming.
DE: How did you manage to solve the problems with help docs before? What software did you use for that kind of work?
The problem with help docs and articles was previously solved with the help of our website which was built on a Drupal 7 platform.
DE: Did you compare Dr.Explain to other solutions or ways?
DE: Why did you choose the Dr.Explain software?
We chose Dr. Explain software based on good references, user friendly interface, image capturing and mapping capabilities, adaptability for mobile devices and most of all a very good search engine with index in capabilities.
DE: What aims did you achieve due to Dr. Explain?
The online version of the publication was very well accepted among the public and our members. The Dr.Explain software allows us to add additional features to the publication that were previously not possible. In the medium and long term we believe the Dr.Explain software will reduce the costs of republishing our booklet on every update which will also allow us to develop our capabilities in other areas in our field.
Here is thelink to our online documentation: http://tudi-brez-grla-je-vredno-ziveti.dls-slo.si
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Please read more about The Association of Laryngectomees of Slovenia at http://www.dls-slo.si/