(Vienna, 02 May 2017) Liesa J. Weiler, clinical and health psychologist from the Department of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine of MedUni Vienna/Vienna General Hospital has been awarded the Occursus Promotion Prize 2017 by the Austrian Association of Hematology & Oncology. She is receiving financial support for her project entitled "Mein Logbuch – Ich kenne mich aus!" [My logbook – I know my way around!], a clinical psychology-based approach to the psychoeducation of children and adolescents in oncology.
The Occursus Prize is given in recognition of existing projects and funds ideas for new projects focusing on communication in encounters with cancer patients and their relatives – including all professional groups involved in their care. The aim is to improve quality-of-life for cancer patients and their relatives through the medium of better communication. Moreover, information should be conveyed empathically and in an understandable form in order to improve the safety and quality of care. The Occursus is being awarded for the second time in 2017, recognising three projects and one project idea relating to communication with cancer patients.
"My logbook – I know my way around!"
"My logbook" under the project leadership of Liesa J. Weiler is a clinical psychology-based healthcare concept for the psychoeducation of children and adolescents in oncology. It offers a strategy for helping children come to terms with, understand and cope with each stage of illness and treatment by using standardised and age-appropriate communication, therefore acting as a route map through the medical and psychological treatment of children and adolescents.
Each child initially receives their own personal logbook with guidance about individual treatment phases, a personal calendar and a place to collect results and other materials. Specific themes are worked through with the child or adolescent using workbooks: for example how to cope with an unfamiliar and frightening environment or how to prepare for chemotherapy or radiotherapy.
The acquired knowledge and new strategies can also be applied or practised in everyday life (e.g. how can I relax so I can lie still during radiotherapy?). The project is currently at the design stage. The next step is implementing the pilot phase and evaluating it.
About Liesa J. Weiler
Liesa J. Weiler studied psychology at the University of Vienna and completed her specialist training to become a clinical and health psychologist. She finished her doctorate in applied medical science at MedUni Vienna in 2015. She has worked as a certified ADHS trainer in the Kiprax Education Center, acted as a child support person for the Judicial Assistance Agency and is co-author of the children's book "My Child Support Person".
She is currently working as a clinical and health psychologist at the Department of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine of MedUni Vienna/Vienna General Hospital, providing in-patient care in paediatric neurooncology (Clinical Psychology Division). Liesa J. Weiler is on the Board of the Psychosocial Working Group in the Society for Pediatric Oncology and Hematology (PSAPOH) and coordinates the "Pediatric Psychology" group within the Austrian Society of Clinical Psychology – Children and Adolescents.