Effects of Sequential Participation in Evidence-Based Health and Wellness Programs among Older Adults

Shinduk Lee, Matthew Lee Smith, Samuel D. Towne, Marcia G. Ory

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background and Objectives: Evidence suggests participation in evidence-based programs by older adults is effective, yet most studies focus on participation in a single evidence-based program, leaving repeated participation insufficiently understood. We aimed to compare participation in multiple evidence-based programs (repeaters) versus a single evidence-based program (nonrepeaters). Research Design and Methods: Secondary data analysis was conducted on pre-post longitudinal data targeting older adults participating in evidence-based program(s) in Texas (2013-2016). Surveys included sociodemographic and health-related indicators (e.g., self-rated health, health behaviors, and falls-risks). Mixed-effects models examined pre-post changes in health-related indicators. Results: Of the 734 study-eligible participants, 145 (20%) participated in two or more evidence-based programs. The participants' average age was 74 years, and the majority was female (80%), non-Hispanic White (79%), or lived in urban or large rural cities/towns (79%). At baseline, repeaters reported less depressive symptomology (p =. 049), fewer chronic conditions (p =. 048), and less concern of falling (p =. 030) than nonrepeaters. Repeaters had better workshop attendance and completion rates (p <. 001). Compared to nonrepeaters, repeaters showed significantly-better improvements in communication with physicians (p =. 013). Discussion and Implications: Study findings suggest potential benefits of participation in multiple evidence-based program workshops, but repeaters may have different health profiles than nonrepeaters in natural settings. Future evaluations should consider participants' past participations in evidence-based programs. Further research is needed to build more comprehensive evidence about the incremental benefits of participation in multiple evidence-based programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberigy016
JournalInnovation in Aging
Volume2
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2018

Keywords

  • Evidence-based programs
  • Lifestyle interventions
  • Program evaluation
  • Repeated participation
  • Translational research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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