A Multimedia Teaching and Reference Tool for Cancer Pain

Period of Performance: 09/30/1993 - 07/31/1994


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Insightful Corporation
Seattle, WA 98109
Principal Investigator


Healthcare professionals face the challenge of successfully managing debilitating pain in patients with cancer. To meet this challenge, they must understand the nature and significance of cancer pain and the prevalence of inadequate management. In addition, they must gain adequate knowledge about available therapeutic resources. We propose to develop a software tool, Talaria, which will provide this information in a particularly enabling fashion. Talaria will provide just-in-time training and it will function as a comprehensive reference tool. Our goal is to build a virtual personal assistant for clinicians managing cancer pain. Existing and forthcoming clinical practice guidelines formally define much of the knowledge base for Talaria although we will extend it in several directions. Our research will exploit new developments in multimedia, hypertext and educational technologies to make the tool effective, comprehensive and engaging. In particular, Talaria will employ a travel metaphor, implemented with graphics, to provide intelligent guidance for the clinician. We will use well-established software tools to develop Talaria and will make it available on inexpensive hardware. We will carry out a formal evaluation at key points in the project.