Healthy Change Program participant

Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP)

CDSMP workshops develop self-management skills among people in a small group setting.

You will learn a process for setting goals each week and solving some of the problems you experience. The workshop allows you to “tailor” the program to your own needs. Participants take an active role in learning self-management. They try new ideas, listen to others and share their progress with the group.

You will also learn new tools and strategies to break the “cycle of symptoms” such as fatigue, pain, depression, stress and anxiety that can result from a having chronic conditions. Some of these tools include:

  • physical activity
  • healthy eating
  • managing pain and fatigue
  • managing stress
  • understanding emotions
  • communication skills
  • working effectively with health care professionals
People who have participated in the CDSMP workshop got more active and reported better health, less fatigue, and better communication with their doctors. They even spent less time in hospital compared to those who did not take the workshop!

Physical Activity

Healthy Eating

Managing Pain and Fatigue

CDSMP, which was developed by Stanford University, is widely considered a best practice in chronic disease prevention & management and has been adopted in many parts of Canada and around the world through the Self-Management Resource Center.

Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP) is a six-week workshop that helps people with chronic or long-term health conditions gain confidence to better manage their symptoms and their daily life. It is available in four formats in Northwestern Ontario; Chronic Conditions (or all long-term conditions mixed in one workshop), Diabetes, Chronic Pain and Cancer Survivors. They are FREE to participants, and participants receive for free the Living a Healthy Life with Chronic Conditions reference book. All participants must pre-register for a workshop. Participants should attend all six sessions if possible. The more sessions attended, the more benefit!

Workshop groups meet once a week for 2½ hours, over six weeks. Workshops vary in the number of participents and we always encourage family and caregiver participation.

What will I learn?

Participants can take as active a role in the workshops as they are comfortable with. Participants make weekly action plans, share experiences, and help each other solve problems they encounter in creating and carrying out their self-management program. Physicians and other health professionals both at Stanford and in the community have reviewed all materials in the workshop.

  • Techniques to deal with problems such as frustration, fatigue, pain and isolation.
  • Appropriate exercise for maintaining and improving strength, flexibility, and endurance
  • Appropriate use of medications
  • Communicating effectively with family, friends, and health professionals
  • Nutrition
  • Decision making
  • How to evaluate new treatments

The workshop is led by two Leaders who have taken special training. The Leaders are volunteers or health care professionals, many of whom have chronic conditions themselves.

The CDSMP workshop is a licensed program developed by Stanford University and now managed through Self-Management Resource Center. It follows a standardized format that is proven to help people learn to better manage the symptoms of chronic conditions. It is considered a best practice in chronic disease self-management and is offered in over 25 countries around the world.
The workshop is funded by the Ontario Health and is part of a the provincial strategy to prevent and manage chronic diseases. From the more populated urban centre of Thunder Bay, Sunset Country, rural communities, East to the North Shore, and up to remote fly-in First Nation communities, the North West LHIN is one of the largest geographic areas that stretches from the Manitoba border to White River!

Our vision is that people with chronic conditions and their caregivers will manage their health and quality of life with confidence. View Our Brochure

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