NIH Discusses the Science of Self-Management

In 2015, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR) and the NIH Basic Behavioral and Social Sciences Opportunity Network (OppNet) jointly convened a panel of ten experts to “discuss basic psychosocial mechanism and processes involved with self-management” of disease and other related conditions.

The science of self-management has grown exponentially over the last several decades. During this time, the NIH has provided support for clinical- and community-based interventions and programs related to the management of acute and chronic illnesses, including asthma, arthritis, diabetes, heart failure, and HIV/AIDS. In particular, the National Institute of Nursing (NINR) has led NIH’s efforts in this area. Accordingly, strides have been made in understanding how to help individuals better manage their chronic conditions. Less attention, however, has been given to examining the “internal mechanisms under the skin whether they are the psychological process, group ties, and biomarkers linked to those behaviors.” The workshop was an effort to develop a research agenda that would allow an investigation of these factors.

OppNet’s goal is to increase the amount and breadth of basic extramural research supported by NIH. The videocast of the workshop, Self, Others, and Chronic Conditions: Basic Mechanisms and Processes that Facilitate or Impede Self-Management, is available for viewing on the NIH’s website. In addition, a series of guest blog posts covering a variety of self-management topics is available on the OBSSR Connector website.

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Posted in Issue 1 (January 12), Update, Volume 35 (2016)

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