Federal, State Agencies Implement AHRQ Research on Disease Self-Management in 16 States

Prevention and Care Management
March 2007

A collaboration led by the U.S. Administration on Aging (AoA) is implementing the Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP) for older Americans that is based on AHRQ-funded research developed at Stanford University. The program is being implemented in 16 states after a successful pilot test in two communities.

Besides AoA and the state agencies, the collaboration includes other HHS agencies, as well as the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and Atlantic Philanthropies. Various public and private organizations at the national, state, and local levels are also involved.

In 2002, AoA launched a major federal demonstration program by funding 12 community partnerships to implement evidence-based programs through local aging service providers. Two of these communities, Philadelphia and Grand Rapids, Michigan, implemented the CDSMP. Both programs showed excellent results with diverse populations, according to Nancy Whitelaw, PhD, Director of the AoA's National Resource Center on Evidence-Based Prevention at NCOA's Center for Healthy Aging.

Whitelaw has long assisted community service providers for the aging to gain skills and expertise in offering evidence-based prevention programs to older adults. In the fall of 2005, she approached Atlantic Philanthropies with the idea of putting a CDSMP demonstration in place to try to implement sustainable systems in five states.

At the same time, AoA was working on taking its evidence-based demonstrations to another level. "AHRQ has played a very extensive role in helping AoA and other HHS partners prepare states for the adoption of CDSMP and other evidence-based disease prevention programs," says Donald Grantt, Program Specialist and leader of AoA's Evidence-Based Disease Prevention Program.

"AHRQ put a lot of funding and staff time into this, along with AoA, and AHRQ also held workshops over a period of three years in Chicago, Atlanta, Washington, D.C., and other cities," Grantt notes, adding, "Additional AHRQ-assisted knowledge-transfer activities are being planned by AoA, AHRQ, and other HHS partners."

After AHRQ worked with AoA to conduct these workshops, AoA offered a new round of demonstration grants to state offices of aging and public health. In the fall of 2006, 16 states received funds to develop CDMSP and other disease-prevention programs.

"Our confidence in the feasibility of widespread successful replication of the CDSMP, and thus the grants to 16 states, was based on the results of Grand Rapids and Philadelphia, as well as other replications in the U.S. (not funded by AoA) and overseas. The CDSMP is embedded in the National Health Service in the United Kingdom," Whitelaw says.

Through its Aging Services Network, AoA is focused on the design and implementation of programs, services, and advocacy for older adults. The Aging Services Network consists of AoA, 55 State Agencies on Aging, approximately 655 Area Agencies on Aging, and some 29,000 service provider agencies.

"We are focused on improving the health of all people aged 60 and over, with an emphasis on those who are socially or economically vulnerable," says Grantt.

For more information on community-based programs for older adults, visit http://www.healthyagingprograms.org.

For details about AoA grants, visit http://www.aoa.gov/AoARoot/Grants/Funding/index.aspx.

Impact Case Study Identifier: 
Multi-Center-07-03 (CP3, OCKT)
AHRQ Product(s): Research, User Liaison and Research Translation (ULRT)
Topics(s): Chronic Care: Self-Management, Prevention, Aging
Geographic Location: National
Implementer: Administration on Aging
Date: 03/01/2007


Lorig KR, Sobel DS, Stewart AL, Brown Jr BW, Ritter PL, González VM, Laurent DD, Holman HR. Evidence suggesting that a chronic disease self-management program can improve health status while reducing utilization and costs: A randomized trial. Medical Care 37(1):5-14, 1999. (HSO6680)


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