Self-management support is the assistance care team members provide to patients with chronic conditions (although applicable for all patients) to encourage daily decisions that improve health-related behaviors and clinical outcomes.
Many patients do not understand what clinicians have said to them and do not participate in decisions about their care, leaving them ill-prepared to take daily actions that lead to a healthy lifestyle. Helping patients make good choices and maintain healthy behaviors requires a collaborative relationship between the care team, the individual, and their families.
This partnership increases patient empowerment and involvement in their care, helps them understand and adhere to recommendations, and contributes to better health outcomes and higher patient and provider satisfaction.
Practices can take many different approaches in their delivery of self-management support:
Options include patients who are high risk, have a specific diagnosis, request assistance, whose conditions are poorly controlled, and/or based on outcomes of a comprehensive health assessment.
SMS includes a variety of techniques and tools that help patients choose and maintain healthy behaviors. Care team staff can ease into an SMS program by learning how to use tools such as action plans, goal-setting worksheets, and problem-solving techniques to support and motivate patients.
Options include provider satisfaction, patient satisfaction, progress on goal attainment, and/or quality measures.