Hold on, for each other: supporting partners of cancer patients via eHealth and positive psychology

Nadine Köhle

Research output: ThesisPhD Thesis - Research UT, graduation UT

101 Downloads (Pure)


Partners of cancer patients are an essential pillar in the cancer trajectory. The patient’s cancer can have an enormous impact on the partner’s life and (mental) health. To support them, psychological interventions are needed. However, partners of cancer patients are often extremely busy and supporting them can be challenging. Web-based intervention offer a possible solution to aiding partners since such interventions circumvent caregivers’ time restraints and daily, unpredictable demands. To fulfil partners’ needs and meet their challenges, the main aim of this research project was to develop and evaluate a psychological Web-based self-help intervention for partners of cancer patients that would be based on acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) and self-compassion. In this thesis, we describe the participatory development of the Web-based intervention Hold on, for each other and its evaluation with the use of mixed-methods. Based on the studies in this thesis it can be concluded that a Web-based self-help intervention is a good alternative for partners of cancer patients, that processes of ACT and self-compassion are useful and applicable to this target group, and that co-creation is essential to develop an acceptable and user-friendly Web-based intervention. This thesis has contributed to the growing awareness of the challenging situation partners of cancer patients are confronted with. Although we focused on partners of cancer patients, we think that the obtained insights are also of great value and potentially helpful for other groups, such as all caregivers of cancer patients and also partners and caregivers of patients suffering from other chronic diseases.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Twente
  • Bohlmeijer, Ernst T., Supervisor
  • Verdonck-de Leeuw, Irma M., Supervisor, External person
  • Drossaert, Stans C.H.C., Co-Supervisor
Award date15 Dec 2016
Place of PublicationEnschede
Print ISBNs978-90-365-4256-2
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2016


Dive into the research topics of 'Hold on, for each other: supporting partners of cancer patients via eHealth and positive psychology'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this