Arthritis & Rheumatism, Volume 60,
October 2009 Abstract Supplement

The 2009 ACR/ARHP Annual Scientific Meeting
Philadelphia October 16-21, 2009.

Are Fewer Workshop Sessions as Effective as the Classic ASMP?

Goeppinger1,  Jean, Lorig2,  Kate R., Gizlice1,  Ziya, Ritter2,  Philip, Brady3,  Teresa J..

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC
Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Atlanta, GA


To determine the effectiveness of a shorter version of the classic six-week Arthritis Self Help Course/Arthritis Self-Management Program (ASHC/ASMP) workshop. We asked if a shorter workshop would have the same positive outcomes as the six-week workshop while – potentially – increasing enrollment and decreasing the financial and personnel barriers experienced by disseminating organizations.


Based on the findings of a needs assessment of persons with arthritis, clinicians, and program providers, we developed a two-week, six hour, lay-led workshop that included the content deemed most important: principles of self-management and pain management, goal-setting/action planning, problem-solving steps and feedback, exercise/fitness, difficult emotions, medication usage, and community resources. Workshop Leaders were trained to facilitate activities focusing on each of these areas. Program participants were recruited at Stanford (N=378) and UNC-Chapel Hill (N=357) and randomized individually (Stanford) and by cluster (UNC-Chapel Hill) to immediately receive (1) the High Resource Intervention: a two-week/six hour workshop with supplementary materials including The Arthritis Helpbook, a self-test, exercise and relaxation CDs, and a "Community Resource" Tip Sheet, (2) the Low Resource Intervention: a two week/six hour workshop with only a supplementary booklet of Tip Sheets, and (3) a four month wait list control group. At the end of four months controls were offered a workshop. All participants were followed in a longitudinal study for 12 months. Self-administered measures included health status, health behavior, arthritis self-efficacy, medical care utilization, and demographic variables. Analyses, including Analysis of Covariance controlling for randomization method, were conducted for participants at both sites.


At four months, comparing all intervention subjects with randomized wait list controls, there were few and inconsistent improvements in health status, health behavior, arthritis self-efficacy, and medical care utilization outcomes at either Stanford or UNC. One out of 16 outcome variables showed statistically significant improvements at Stanford, while two out of 16 showed statistically significant improvements at UNC. There were also few differences between participants in high and low exposure interventions at either site. The twelve month longitudinal study findings were even weaker than those at four months.


The results of this attempt to develop a less time and resource intensive version of the ASHC/ASMP must be considered negative. The improvements subsequent to the two-week interventions were minimal, particularly when comparing the results of the randomized study to six-week small-group, Mailed Tool Kit, and internet interventions.

To cite this abstract, please use the following information:
Goeppinger, Jean, Lorig, Kate R., Gizlice, Ziya, Ritter, Philip, Brady, Teresa J..; Are Fewer Workshop Sessions as Effective as the Classic ASMP? [abstract]. Arthritis Rheum 2009;60 Suppl 10 :1367
DOI: 10.1002/art.26441

Abstract Supplement

Meeting Menu