Australian Health Review Australian Health Review Society
Journal of the Australian Healthcare & Hospitals Association

Self-management support and training for patients with chronic and complex conditions improves health-related behaviour and health outcomes

Peter W Harvey, John N Petkov, Gary Misan, Jeffrey Fuller, Malcolm W Battersby, Teofilo N Cayetano, Kate Warren and Paul Holmes

Australian Health Review 32(2) 330 - 338
Published: 2008


The Sharing Health Care SA chronic disease selfmanagement (CDSM) project in rural South Australia was designed to assist patients with chronic and complex conditions (diabetes, cardiovascular disease and arthritis) to learn how to participate more effectively in the management of their condition and to improve their self-management skills. Participants with chronic and complex conditions were recruited into the Sharing Health Care SA program and offered a range of education and support options (including a 6-week peer-led chronic disease self-management program) as part of the Enhanced Primary Care care planning process. Patient self-reported data were collected at baseline and subsequent 6-month intervals using the Partners in Health (PIH) scale to assess selfmanagement skill and ability for 175 patients across four data collection points. Health providers also scored patient knowledge and self-management skills using the same scale over the same intervals. Patients also completed a modified Stanford 2000 Health Survey for the same time intervals to assess service utilisation and health-related lifestyle factors. Results show that both mean patient self-reported PIH scores and mean health provider PIH scores for patients improved significantly over time, indicating that patients demonstrated improved understanding of their condition and improved their ability to manage and deal with their symptoms. These results suggest that involvement in peer-led selfmanagement education programs has a positive effect on patient self-management skill, confidence and health-related behaviour.

© AHHA 2008

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