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Evaluation of a Person-Centered, Theory-Based Intervention to Promote Health Behaviors

Worawong, Chiraporn; Borden, Mary, Jo; Cooper, Karen, M.; Pérez, Oscar, A.; Lauver, Diane

doi: 10.1097/NNR.0000000000000254

Background Effective promotion of health behaviors requires strong interventions. Applying person-centered approaches and concepts synthesized from two motivational theories could strengthen the effects of such interventions.

Objectives The aim of the study was to report the effect sizes, fidelity, and acceptability of a person-centered, health behavior intervention based on self-regulation and self-determination theories.

Methods Using a pre- and postintervention design, with a 4-week follow-up, advanced practice registered nurses made six weekly contacts with 52 volunteer participants. Most participants were educated White women. Advanced practice registered nurses elicited participant motives and particular goals for either healthy diet or physical activity behaviors. Minutes and type of activity and servings of fat and fruit/vegetables were assessed.

Results Effect sizes for engaging in moderate aerobic activity and in fruit/vegetable and fat intake were 0.53, 0.82, and −0.57, respectively. The fidelity of delivery was 80–97% across contacts, and fidelity of participants’ receipt of intervention components was supported. Participant acceptance of the intervention was supported by positive ratings on aspects of relevance and usefulness.

Discussion To advance the science of health behavior change and improve client health status, person-centered approaches and concepts synthesized from motivational theories can be applied and tested with a randomized, controlled design and diverse samples to replicate and extend this promising behavioral intervention.

Chiraporn Worawong, PhD, is Director, Boromrajonani College of Nursing, Udon Thani, Thailand.

Mary Jo Borden, RN, WHNP-BC, CCM, MSN, is Faculty and Co-Director, National RN Case Manager Training Center, Boaz, Wisconsin.

Karen M. Cooper, RN, BSN, MA, is Integrative Health Private Practitioner, Fort Collins, Colorado.

Oscar A. Pérez, PhD, is Assistant Professor, Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, New York.

Diane Lauver, PhD, RN, FAAN, is Professor, School of Nursing, University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Accepted for publication June 9, 2017.

Editorial Note: This paper was accepted under the editorship of Susan J. Henly

The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institute of Nursing Research or the National Institutes of Health.

The authors acknowledge that the project described was supported partly by (a) a program grant to the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Nursing and an award from it to the first author from the National Institute of Nursing Research and (b) a competitive award from the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Nursing to the first author.

The authors would like to thank colleagues at University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Nursing: Karen Solheim, PhD, RN, Clinical Professor; Linda Baumann, PhD, RN, Professor Emerita, for critical comments on earlier versions; Roger Brown, PhD, Professor, for statistical support; and Jennifer Orshak, PhD student, BSN, MA, RN, for editorial assistance. The authors would also like to thank all participants for their involvement.

The authors have no conflicts of interest to report.

Corresponding author: Diane Lauver, University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Nursing, 4121 Cooper Hall, 701 Highland Ave., Madison, WI 53705 (e-mail:

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