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Table 1 Content of the intervention program

From: A web-based psychological support program for caregivers of children with cystic fibrosis: a pilot study

Treatment component Writing assignment and its aims and content
Preparation Scheduling and providing potential dates for conducting the writing sessions.
#1 – Reflection of current appraisal of their child’s CF and identification of desired changes in the impact of the condition upon their life using a metaphor.
Coping with anxiety and fear of disease progression #2 – Selection of an anxiety-provoking situation or cognition and describing specifically the focus of their fear and their associated thoughts and feelings.
#3 – Restructure own fear-provoking thoughts via writing a letter to a friend in a similar situation and thus to help their friend to develop a new perspective of the situation and to think about it in a more functional way.
#4 – Intensification via a second letter going into details regarding strategies for their friend to gain a more adaptive and accurate perspective of the situation.
#5 – Development of a strategy how to deal with the most threatening situation, if it actually occurs.
Sharing responsibility for treatment #6 – Reflection on the allocation of treatment-related tasks within the family and if desired planning reallocation.
#7 – Report of status of implementation of reallocation of treatment-related tasks and if not successful identification of barriers and development of strategies to deal with these barriers in the future.
Providing self-care #8 – Learn to appraise positive things in life and caring for oneself. Identification of own needs via using a diary for positive experiences each day and planning enjoyable activities.
Summary and integration #9 – Reflection and integration of the therapy contents and aims at preventing relapses via a letter to oneself.