This paper describes the development of a community-based self-management programme for older people with chronic multi-morbidity using intervention mapping (IM). Two literature reviews, a pilot study and health expert and consumer groups informed the content and the planning for implementation. Health- based self-management approaches seek to empower participants to be change makers for themselves.
As a structured methodology, IM guides the development of health education interventions using six steps which include: needs assessment; isolation of objectives; theory based ‘teaching/learning’ approaches; programme content; modes of delivery; and evaluation. Bandura’s social cognitive theory informed the methods and practical strategies for the programme delivery.
Alongside well known health self-management principles, our programme addresses trans-diagnostic dimensions such as fatigue, pain, breathlessness, sleep disturbance; and the potential psychological effects associated with chronicity and ageing. The cognitive and emotional domains are addressed through introducing mindful coping techniques.
The objectives for the intervention aim to improve knowledge, symptom management, self-efficacy, coping and mindfulness with community dwelling older people with long term conditions (LTCs).The programme is delivered in four sessions over consecutive weeks providing four hours of healthy living education and empowerment strategies, then four hours on the mindful coping skills training. Participants are given a comprehensive manual to keep.
IM demonstrated utility in the formulation of a systematic approach for devising a programme for the target population. Applying IM means planners have confidence that the programme is evidence-based and works to obtain the desired outcomes for enhancing peoples’ self-management ability.