Can Do MS worked with an independent contractor to evaluate its JUMPSTART Program’s curriculum to learn the full impact the program has on people living with multiple sclerosis and their support partners.
The JUMPSTART Program resulted in improvements in knowledge, skills, and resources (Oct. 2013).
What did participants think about the JUMPSTART Program?
CAN DO PROGRAM OUTCOMES RESEARCH
Can Do MS analyzed data collected from CAN DO Program participants with multiple sclerosis as part of its outcomes-measurement study launched in 2007. The initial analysis will determine whether the data collected from participants with MS is a large enough sample to scientifically validate the effectiveness of the CAN DO Programs.
Results from this analysis were presented as a poster called Perceived Health and Self-Efficacy Improve after a Wellness Program in Persons with MS at the 2009 Consortium of MS Centers annual meeting.
Further analysis of the outcomes study is to measure the short- and long-term effects of Can Do MS’s CAN DO Programs. The study examines self-efficacy1, general health and physical activity in program participants with MS to determine how they incorporate the CAN DO Program’s methods for managing MS in their daily lives after the program.
For 28 years Can Do MS has received qualitative and anecdotal feedback from program participants stating that they gained positive health perception, improved satisfaction with life, stress reduction, ability to cope, and enhanced self-efficacy and sense of hope. This study’s results will quantify Can Do MS’s impact on people living with MS.
To measure the CAN DO Program’s longevity of effect, the study examines the participants’ responses prior to program participation and compares their responses one, three and six months after program participation. Can Do MS will continue to measure the longevity of effect in all 2008 program participants and start examining participants’ responses 12 months after program participation.
The tools used to measure the CAN DO Program’s longevity of effect on program participants are:
• Multiple Sclerosis Self-Efficacy Scale – A validated tool that assesses psychological adjustment and quality of life of individuals with MS
• Physical Activity Scale for Individuals for Disabilities – A validated physical activity survey designed to assess physical activity in individuals with physical disabilities
• General Health – Health status questionnaire that has been tested and validated extensively
1. Self-efficacy refers to one’s degree of confidence in one’s ability to perform behaviors or management strategies related to a specific situation or condition. Thus, it reflects a perception of capability rather than measuring the actual performance of the capability.
Defined by: Carolyn E. Schwartz, ScD, Linda Coulthard-Morris, MA, Qi Zeng, MS, Paul Retzlaff, PhD in a 1996 article Measuring Self-Efficacy in People with MS: A Validation Study
For example, a person with high self-efficacy may engage in a more health-related activity when an illness occurs, whereas a person with low self-efficacy would result in feelings of hopelessness.
2. The outcomes study examines self-efficacy, general health and physical activity in people with MS, not their support partners. In the future, Can Do MS might examine its impact on support partners as well.