A Look at approaches that support making healthy changes in life

Posted at 4:34 pm on 07/28/2016 by Dave Greene RN, BSHCM

Good Afternoon,

Today I'm going to be discussing various behavior change theories, and how they directly impact an individuals ability to achieve improved health outcomes.  As a case manager working with patients and families daily, it is my goal to achieve positive outcomes that improve my clients quality of life.   I hope you find the information useful, and I encourage you to leave your comments following this post.

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Behavior Change Theories Utilized in Health Promotion

Health Belief Model

The health belief model is a psychological health behavior change model developed to explain and predict health-related behaviors, particularly in regard to the uptake of health services.[1] The health belief model was developed in the 1950s by social psychologists at the U.S. Public Health Service[1][2] and remains one of the most well-known and widely used theories in health behavior research.[3][4] The health belief model suggests that people's beliefs about health problems, perceived benefits of action and barriers to action, and self-efficacy explain engagement (or lack of engagement) in health-promoting behavior.[1][2] A stimulus, or cue to action, must also be present in order to trigger the health-promoting behavior.[1][2]

Theory of Planned Behavior

In psychology, the theory of planned behavior is a theory about the link between beliefs and behavior. The concept was proposed by Icek Ajzen to improve on the predictive power of the theory of reasoned action by including perceived behavioural control.[1] It is one of the most predictive persuasion theories. It has been applied to studies of the relations among beliefs, attitudes, behavioral intentions and behaviors in various fields such as advertising, public relations, advertising campaigns and health care. The theory states that attitude toward behavior, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control, together shape an individuals behavioral intentions and behaviors.

Diffusion of Innovation Theory

Diffusion of innovations is a theory that seeks to explain how, why, and at what rate new ideas and technology spread through cultures. Everett Rogers, a professor of communication studies, popularized the theory in his book Diffusion of Innovations; the book was first published in 1962, and is now in its fifth edition (2003).[1] The book says that diffusion is the process by which an innovation is communicated through certain channels over time among the members of a social system. The origins of the diffusion of innovations theory are varied and span multiple disciplines. The book espouses the theory that there are four main elements that influence the spread of a new idea: the innovation, communication channels, time, and a social system. This process relies heavily on human capital. The innovation must be widely adopted in order to self-sustain. Within the rate of adoption, there is a point at which an innovation reaches critical mass. The categories of adopters are: innovators, early adopters, early majority, late majority, and laggards (Rogers 1962, p. 150). Diffusion of Innovations manifests itself in different ways in various cultures and fields and is highly subject to the type of adopters and innovation-decision process.

Social Cognitive Theory

Social cognitive theory (SCT), used in psychology, education, and communication, pontificates that portions of an individuals knowledge acquisition can be directly related to observing others within the context of social interactions, experiences, and outside media influences. In other words, people do not learn new behaviors solely by trying them and either succeeding or failing, but rather, the survival of humanity is dependent upon the replication of the actions of others. Depending on whether people are rewarded or punished for their behavior and the outcome of the behavior, that behavior may be modeled. Further, media provide models for a vast array of people in many different environmental settings.

The Trans theoretical Model

The trans theoretical model of behavior change assesses an individuals readiness to act on a new healthier behavior, and provides strategies, or processes of change to guide the individual through the stages of change to Action and Maintenance. The trans theoretical model is also known by the abbreviation "TTM"[1] and by the term "stages of change."[2][3] A popular book, Changing for Good,[4] and articles in the news media[5][6][7][8][9] have discussed the model. It is "arguably the dominant model of health behaviour change, having received unprecedented research attention, yet it has simultaneously attracted criticism."[10]

Social Norms Theory (Approach)

The social norms approach, or social norms marketing,[1] is an environmental strategy gaining ground in health campaigns.[2] While conducting research in the mid-1980s, two researchers, H.W. Perkins and A.D. Berkowitz,[3] reported that students at a small U.S. college held exaggerated beliefs about the normal frequency and consumption habits of other students with regard to alcohol. These inflated perceptions have been found in many educational institutions, with varying populations and locations.[4] Despite the fact that college drinking is at elevated levels, the perceived amount almost always exceeds actual behavior [2] The social norms approach has shown signs of countering misperceptions, however research on resulting changes in behavior resulting from changed perceptions varies between mixed to conclusively nonexistent.[5]

I understand this is a lot take in, but I wanted you to understand the science and methodology I utilize in my approach to case management to drive positive changes for the individuals I serve.  I use proven methods that have been tested to assess your strengths, have an understanding that issues are never black and white, and therefore connect the heart and mind of medicine by using compassionate evidence-based approach for achieving your goals of care.  I'm excited to offer a program that will support you with practical daily strategies, deliver proven disease management interventions, and support you by providing access to trusted community resources I've used successfully helping others in my role as a hospital case manager. 

If you're interested in starting the discussion on how I can help your aging or ill loved one please contact me today.  Thank you for visiting today.  Please leave your comments, so we can continue to provide information that meets your needs.

Take care, Dave.

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