Workshop Content

The curriculum and format of the program is designed to increase the confidence of participants to take significant steps to improve their physical activity and nutrition and better manage their health. Participants set weekly goals and the group encourages them and helps them brainstorm solutions when they have problems reaching their goals.

 

Take Charge of Your Health

Topics include:

  • Overview of self-management and chronic health conditions
  • Using your mind to manage symptoms
  • Getting a good night’s sleep
  • Making an action plan
  • Feedback and problem-solving
  • Dealing with difficult emotions
  • Physical activity and exercise
  • Preventing falls
  • Making decisions
  • Pain and fatigue management
  • Better breathing
  • Healthy eating
  • Communication skills
  • Medication usage
  • Making informed treatment decisions
  • Dealing with depression
  • Working with your health care professional and organization
  • Weight managements
  • Future plans

Take Charge of Your Diabetes

Topics include:

  • Overview of self-management and diabetes
  • Making an action plan
  • Monitoring
  • Nutrition/healthy eating
  • Feedback/problem solving
  • Preventing low blood sugar
  • Preventing complications
  • Fitness/exercise
  • Stress management
  • Relaxation techniques
  • Difficult emotions
  • Monitoring blood sugar
  • Depression
  • Positive thinking
  • Communication
  • Medications
  • Working with your health care professional
  • Working with the health care system
  • Sick days
  • Skin and foot care
 
 

How are Workshops Structured?

 
Workshops are led by trained facilitators who have professional or personal experience with chronic conditions, and who follow a structured protocol.

Workshops are led by trained facilitators who have professional or personal experience with chronic conditions, and who follow a structured protocol.

Workshops are designed to be taught in a community setting (e.g., senior center, church, library, hospital, community center)

Workshops are designed to be taught in a community setting (e.g., senior center, church, library, hospital, community center)

Workshops are offered as a 2 ½ - hour per week workshop for 6-8 weeks.

Workshops are offered as a 2 ½ - hour per week workshop for 6-8 weeks.

 
Workshops help participants learn how to take control of their chronic condition as they develop goals and create personalized action plans.

Workshops help participants learn how to take control of their chronic condition as they develop goals and create personalized action plans.

Workshops encourage patient interaction and mutual problem-solving and support

Workshops encourage patient interaction and mutual problem-solving and support

Workshops are available in English and Spanish.

Workshops are available in English and Spanish.

IL Pathways to Health Referral System

The benefits of referring patients and clients to evidence-based community-based programs are well-documented, however we recognize that building connections between healthcare and community-based organizations can be complicated. We offer two types of referrals. Depending on your needs and goals one or the other might be more appropriate.

Referral Options:

 

Panel Referrals

Work with us to send a panel of referrals who could benefit from our programs.

Please contact us or call The Health Education Team at (800)699-9043 for more information.

Individual Referrals

Allows you to send individual referrals, as needed, for patients who could benefit from our programs.

You can send us a workshop referral here, or by using the link located at the bottom of our website for quick access.

 

How Effective are the Take Charge of Your Health Programs?

 
 

Based on a recent national study of Take Charge of Your Health, the program resulted in significant, measurable improvements in the health and quality of life of adults with chronic conditions. Take Charge of Your Health also appears to save enough through reductions in health care expenditures to pay for itself within the first year.


Health Benefits:

  • Improved self-reported health.

  • Improved health status: fatigue, shortness of breath, depression, pain, stress, and sleep.

  • Improved health-related quality of life.

  • Improved communication with doctors, medication compliance, and health literacy.

Cost Savings:

  • $714 per person savings in emergency room visits and hospital utilization.

  • $364 per person net savings after considering program costs of $350 per participant.

  • Potential savings of $6.6 billion by reaching 10% of Americans with one or more chronic conditions.

 
Graduates of AgeOptions Take Charge of Your Diabetes workshop

Graduates of AgeOptions Take Charge of Your Diabetes workshop

Promoting Life-Changing Skills

Along with teaching life-changing skills, one of the key components of Take Charge is to build self-confidence. A 62-year-old participant with osteoarthritis, spinal stenosis, and diabetes once described herself as a prisoner of her pain, but after attending a Take Charge of Your Health workshop series, she feels she has regained the independence of her younger life. “I was living in fear and doubt of my own capabilities with my chronic diseases, but then as I took the program…I just soared.” Chronic disease self-management programs are being implemented successfully in senior centers, churches and other community settings throughout Illinois, and across the country.

More than 90% of older adults age 60+ have at least one chronic condition, with almost 75% having two or more chronic conditions
The most common chronic diseases include asthma, kidney and lung disease, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, stroke and arthritis.

Measuring Outcomes for Take Charge of Your Health

National studies show that participants who complete at least four of the six sessions experience the following outcomes: improved self-reported health; improved health-related quality of life; reduced number of unhealthy physical days and unhealthy mental days; improved communication with physicians, medication compliance and health literacy; and improved health status in six indicators: 1) fatigue, 2) shortness of breath, 3) depression, 4) pain, 5) stress, and 6) sleep problems.

Based on our evaluation of the health of program participants, we expect to see statistically significant improvement in health confidence, at least one new healthy behavior (maintained by the majority of the sampled participants at 3 months and 6 months after the end of the workshop), and improved self-efficacy in communication with health care providers.