Stichting Artsen voor Kinderen formed the Cyberpoli for a number of reasons:
1) The information about a chronic disorder is often too elaborate or too complicated. Surely that can be simplified!
Children and adolescents are often inundated with information from the hospital or their medical practitioners, which can be quite complicated too. At the Cyberpoli, they can read and take everything in at their own pace.
2) Children and adolescents with a chronic disorder can sometimes feel isolated. We can do something about that!
At the Cyberpoli, children notice that they are not the only ones with a disorder. They can read the stories of other children and exchange tips and experiences. They can find each other via the friends finder.
3) Many children have questions about their disorder. We can help!
What if a child wants to know something now, whereas the next outpatient appointment is not until next month? In that case, he or she can ask questions to an expert panel of specialists, pediatricians, nurses, nutritional experts, experiential experts and various other medical practitioners. They answer the questions and issue practical advice for the children. If needed, the child is advised to contact his or her own GP or practitioner.
Why Cyberpoli Kids?
A number of considerations have played a role in the decision to also translate the Cyberpoli into English:
- Two university studies show that the Cyberpoli provides clear added value; viz., providing reliable medical information written and formulated in a style and format attractive to adolescents, facilitating contact with fellow patients, receiving emotional support and the possibility to ask questions to a panel of medical practitioners and experiential experts anonymously.
- The added value of the Cyberpoli is also reflected in the number of users.
In the Netherlands, the Cyberpoli currently attracts more than one million visitors a year and this number is still growing.
- Stichting Artsen voor Kinderen was formed to contribute to improving the quality of life of children and adolescents with a chronic disorder. This does, of course, also apply to children and adolescents outside the Netherlands. By translating the Cyberpoli into English, the site will also be accessible to English-speaking children and adolescents with a chronic illness outside the Netherlands.