restricted access Lessons Learned From Implementing Health Coaching in The Heart Healthy Lenoir Hypertension Study

Background: Health coaching is increasingly important in patient-centered medical homes.

Objectives: Describe formative evaluation results and lessons learned from implementing health coaching to improve hypertension self-management in rural primary care.

Methods: A hypertension collaborative was formed consisting of six primary care sites. Twelve monthly health coaching phone calls were attempted for 487 participants with hypertension.

Lessons Learned: Participant engagement was challenging; 58% remained engaged, missing fewer than three consecutive calls. Multivariate analyses revealed that older age (odds ratio [OR], 1.03; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.01–1.05), African American race (O,R 1.73; 95% CI, 1.15–2.60), greater number of comorbidities (OR, 1.17; 95% CI, 1.05–1.30) and receiving coaching closer to enrollment (OR, 5.03; 95% CI, 2.53–9.99) were correlated independently with engagement. Participants reported the coaching valuable; 96% would recommend health coaching to others.

Conclusions: Health coaching in hypertension care can be successful strategy for engaging more vulnerable groups. A more tailored approach may improve engagement with counseling.