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Self Management Week 2012

Posted on: Fri 5th Oct 2012

My Condition, My Terms, My Life-Self management: A professional approach?

Self Management Week 2012 aimed to promote self management throughout Scotland. This year, to link with the ‘My Condition, My Terms, My Life’ campaign; there was a focus on health and social care professionals. The week highlighted good practice examples being used across the third sector, health and social care to encourage more professionals to use a self management approach in their daily practice.

The ALLIANCE ran a launch event in Inverness on Monday 1 October promoting the effectiveness of professionals using a self management in daily practice. And a showcase event in Glasgow, Tuesday 2 October at the ALLIANCE Hub, exploring the benefits of using a self management approach in professional practice.  The event showcased good practice examples of partnership working for person centred solutions.

At both events we ran the My Conditions, My Terms, My Life workshop to show how self management can help you as a professional, carer or someone living with a long term condition.

It means people with long term conditions and their carers are:

  • better informed about their condition(s)
  • better prepared for everyday challenges
  • better supported when they need it
  • able to enjoy increased independence, a better quality of life, and better relationships with professional and carers  that support them

And for health and social care professionals, self management can mean:

  • better outcomes for, and better relationships with, the people they support
  • better, cross learning
  • greater job satisfaction
  • a reduced burden on the NHS

We gave delegates four questions to prompt discussion:

1. In what way does your current practice support self management?

2. What do you think people living with long term conditions need to be able to do more themselves?

3. What practical advice would you give someone new to your field about how to support encourage self management? What would be your top tips?

4. How do you encourage your colleagues/staff to support people to self manage?

The workshop generated some lively discussion and here are some of the comments raised during the discussion:

  1. “sign posting to support groups” “educating people and professionals”
  2. “Be more responsible and take a more active role in their condition, get the correct information” “being well informed about the condition(s)” “goal planning” “level of acceptance of the condition is needed before you get to a place where you can self manage” “peer support”
  3. “Listen more” “educate the person, giving them the choice” “the person should be seen as equal to the professionals” “make the person feel comfortable- speak language everyone can understand” “balance what would be best for the person with what the person wants” “information is power!”
  4. “Think of them as a person with a condition, not a condition with a person attached!” “demand that services/new developments are person centred not target focused” “communicate, educate,  listen, empower!

During Self Management Week we also ran a joint Twitter event with NHS Inform to encourage virtual conversation around self management to encourage people and organisations to share their self management top tips with others, around what keeps you well with your long term condition. We used hash tag #selfmanagement

Three key themes came from the Twitter chat; see below the #selfmanagement top tip themes:

#selfmanagement theme one – importance of local community resources and support, especially voluntary sector orgs and services such as pharmacies

#selfmanagement theme two – people are at the centre, not the health conditions they have

#selfmanagement theme three– access to info and sharing experiences and good practice

The My Condition, My Terms, My Life campaign will continue to work to raise awareness of self management amongst health and social care professionals, people with long term conditions and their unpaid carers. As well as raising awareness of self management amongst general public to improve understanding, awareness of self management and change attitudes towards people with long term conditions.

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