Community Health 

Second of two Self-Management Workshops of Chronic diseases ends on successful note

“The course was of great benefit to me, I have learnt a lot from it.”

Those words came from one of the very pleased participants of the last of two Self- Management Workshops for Chronic Diseases which recently concluded after running for six weeks at the Ministry of Health and the Environment’s Headquarters on Redcliffe Street.

Self-Management Workshops of Chronic diseases 1The woman continued “I have become a stick- to- it person as a result of it; I’ve learnt about portion sizes, how to eat healthy and the assignments given to us were like good medicine especially the deep breathing techniques. I’ve also learnt about the mind and how it can fool you into seeing things that are not even there, the entire course was very fulfilling.”

The two facilitators of the workshops were Nurse Practitioner Almarie Coates and Acting Chief Nutritionist Susan Gardner.

Self-Management Workshops of Chronic diseases2Participants were taught pertinent self- management skills which will enable them to better manage their conditions.

The two- six weeks workshops were educational and intense as facilitators focused on lifestyle changes and renewed awareness on the various ways in which they can ensure better health.

The workshops consisted of six sessions and the topics covered formed part of the self- management manual inclusive of which were: symptom cycle –pain, depression, anxiety and emotional disturbance.

Other areas focused upon during the workshop were medication, decision- making and weight management skills. Participants were also urged to change unhealthy diets and engage in regular physical exercises.

Self-Management Workshops of Chronic diseases group2The workshop was designed to strengthen the skills in working more effectively with their health care providers, to discuss strategies for managing a healthy weight, to assess progress and acknowledge accomplishments and to integrate the skills learnt at the workshops into plans for the future.

Nurse Coates remarked, “Knowledge is power and when persons are informed, they can then become empowered to take better care of themselves; the next step is to train other health care professionals so that they in turn will go out into the communities and train others”.

Both Gardner and Coates are now master trainers of the Self- Management programme and are looking forward to continually training and teaching as many persons as possible.

The Workshops were sponsored by the Pan American Health Organization {PAHO} in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and the Environment.



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