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Self-Management Support

What is Self-Management Support?

Successful self-management support programs involve implementing changes at multiple levels:

  • Patient-clinician interactions
  • Office environment changes
  • Health system, policy, and environmental supports (1)

In clinical settings, self-management support goes beyond simply supplying patients with information. It includes a commitment to patient-centered care, providing comprehensive patient education, creating a clinical team composed of clinicians and administrative staff with clearly defined roles and responsibilities, and using office systems to support follow-up contact and tracking of patients.

In the office setting, self-management support goes beyond simply supplying patients with information. It includes a commitment to patient-centered care, providing comprehensive patient education, creating a clinical team composed of clinicians and administrative staff with clearly defined roles and responsibilities, and using office systems to support follow-up and tracking of patients.

Self-management support has been identified as the area of chronic care that is least often implemented and most challenging to integrate into usual care. (1)

Self-management support includes:

  • Providing empathic, patient-centered care.
  • Involving the whole care team in planning, carrying out, and following up on a patient visit.
  • Planning patient visits that focus on prevention and care management, rather than on acute care.
  • Involving the patient in goal setting.
  • Providing tailored education and skills training using materials appropriate for different cultures and health literacy levels.
  • Making referrals to community-based resources, such as programs that help patients quit smoking or follow an exercise plan.
  • Regular follow-up contact with patients via e-mail, phone, text messaging, and mailings to support them in efforts to maintain healthy behaviors.

Citations
  1. Glasgow RE, David CL, Funnell MM, et al. Implementing practical interventions to support chronic illness self-management. Jt Comm J Qual Saf 2003;29(11):563-74