A multilevel approach for promoting physical activity in rural communities: a cluster randomized controlled trial.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:Physical activity (PA) has demonstrated a decreased risk in various cancers and other chronic diseases; however, rural residents are less likely to attain recommended levels of PA compared to urban and suburban counterparts. Given rural residents make up 15% of the United States population, there is a need for novel approaches to increase PA among this population. The goal of the present study is to investigate the effectiveness of a multilevel intervention to increase PA rates among rural residents. METHODS/DESIGN:Guided by an ecological framework, a group-randomized design will be used to evaluate the effects of a three-level intervention for increasing PA among adult residents residing in 6 rural communities (n?=?600) along with 6 control communities (n?=?600). The intervention includes components at the individual (short message service [SMS] text messages), interpersonal (social support in walking groups), and community levels (events at existing trails). Innovative methods to encourage participation will be employed as well as a focus on life priorities (family, recreation, hobbies) other than health. Aim 1 includes a literature review and key informant interviews to determine the local contexts for intervention adaptation. Aim 2 will employ a set of interventions at the individual, interpersonal, and community-levels to evaluate their impact on moderate-to-vigorous PA as measured by self-reported (telephone survey) and objectively assessed (accelerometry) measures. These data are supplemented by location based on Global Positioning System and community audits, which provide information on recreational amenities, programs/policies, and street segments. DISCUSSION:This study is among the first of its kind to test a multilevel intervention in a rural setting, address life priorities that compliment health outcomes, and examine moderation between behavioral interventions and the natural environments where people are physically active. Our results will influence the field by enhancing the ability to scale-up innovative, PA interventions with the potential to reach high-risk, rural populations. TRIAL REGISTRATION:Clinical Trials NCT03683173 , September 25, 2018.
Project description:There is an urgent need to increase population levels of physical activity, particularly amongst those who are socio-economically disadvantaged. Multiple factors influence physical activity behaviour but the generalisability of current evidence to such 'hard-to-reach' population subgroups is limited by difficulties in recruiting them into studies. Also, rigorous qualitative studies of lay perceptions and perceptions of community leaders about public health efforts to increase physical activity are sparse. We sought to explore, within a socio-economically disadvantaged community, residents' and community leaders' perceptions of physical activity (PA) interventions and issues regarding their implementation, in order to improve understanding of needs, expectations, and social/environmental factors relevant to future interventions.Within an ongoing regeneration project (Connswater Community Greenway), in a socio-economically disadvantaged community in Belfast, we collaborated with a Community Development Agency to purposively sample leaders from public- and voluntary-sector community groups and residents. Individual semi-structured interviews were conducted with 12 leaders. Residents (n?=?113), of both genders and a range of ages (14 to 86 years) participated in focus groups (n?=?14) in local facilities. Interviews and focus groups were recorded, transcribed verbatim and analysed using a thematic framework.Three main themes were identified: awareness of PA interventions; factors contributing to intervention effectiveness; and barriers to participation in PA interventions. Participants reported awareness only of interventions in which they were involved directly, highlighting a need for better communications, both inter- and intra-sectoral, and with residents. Meaningful engagement of residents in planning/organisation, tailoring to local context, supporting volunteers, providing relevant resources and an 'exit strategy' were perceived as important factors related to intervention effectiveness. Negative attitudes such as apathy, disappointing experiences, information with no perceived personal relevance and limited access to facilities were barriers to people participating in interventions.These findings illustrate the complexity of influences on a community's participation in PA interventions and support a social-ecological approach to promoting PA. They highlight the need for cross-sector working, effective information exchange, involving residents in bottom-up planning and providing adequate financial and social support. An in-depth understanding of a target population's perspectives is of key importance in translating PA behaviour change theories into practice.
Project description:To evaluate the impact of a model of rural community health service (CHS) on the use and acceptability of primary healthcare services.Quasi-experimental.Two adjacent rural counties in China.5842 residents in 2009 and 3807 in 2010 from 980 households in 7 intervention townships and 49 villages; 2232 residents in 2009 and 2315 in 2010 from 628 households in 3 comparison townships and 9 villages. All residents were approached to participate, with no significant differences in age or sex between groups.Multilevel intervention in 2009 including training rural practitioners, encouraging clinic improvements, providing clinical guidelines, standards and subsidies.Surveys of community members from randomly sampled households in 2009 and 2010.Satisfaction with and utilisation of outpatient and public health services.Factor analysis confirmed two components of satisfaction. Univariate and multilevel analysis was used.Satisfaction scores for intervention county respondents increased from 21.4 (95% CI 21.1 to 21.7) to 22.1 (95% CI 21.7 to 22.4) with no change in comparison area. In multilevel analysis, satisfaction with patient-centred care was associated with chronic disease, shorter waiting times and county. Satisfaction with clinic environment and cost was associated with female gender, shorter waiting times but not county. The proportion of children receiving immunisation in intervention village clinics increased from 42.5% (95% CI 27.9% to 47.1%) to 59.2% (95% CI 53.8% to 64.6%) whereas this decreased in comparison villages (16.5%; 95% CI 10.3% to 22.7% to 6.0%; 95% CI 1.3% to 10.7%). Antenatal visits increased in intervention villages (from 69.0%, 95% CI 65.8% to 73.1% to 75.8%, 95% CI 72.2% to 79.4%) with no change in comparison villages.Introduction of a CHS model adapted to economically less-developed rural areas was associated with some improvements in satisfaction with care and use of some village-based public health services. Further research is needed to determine its public health impact and application to other areas.
Project description:The objective of this study was to describe a multilevel conceptual framework to understand the role of food insecurity on antiretroviral therapy adherence. The authors illustrated an example of how they used the multilevel framework to develop an intervention for poor people living with HIV in a rural and low-resource community. The framework incorporates intrapersonal, interpersonal, and structural-level theories of understanding and changing health behaviors. The framework recognizes the role of personal, social, and environmental factors on cognition and behavior, with particular attention to ways in which treatment adherence is enabled or prevented by structural conditions, such as food insecurity.
Project description:BACKGROUND:HIV testing uptake in South Africa is below optimal levels. Community mobilization (CM) may increase and sustain demand for HIV testing, however, little rigorous evidence exists regarding the effect of CM interventions on HIV testing and the mechanisms of action. METHODS:We implemented a theory-driven CM intervention in 11 of 22 randomly-selected villages in rural Mpumalanga Province. Cross-sectional surveys including a community mobilization measure were conducted before (n = 1181) and after (n = 1175) a 2-year intervention (2012-2014). We assessed community-level intervention effects on reported HIV testing using multilevel logistic models. We used structural equation models to explore individual-level effects, specifically whether intervention assignment and individual intervention exposure were associated with HIV testing through community mobilization. RESULTS:Reported testing increased equally in both control and intervention sites: the intervention effect was null in primary analyses. However, the hypothesized pathway, CM, was associated with higher HIV testing in the intervention communities. Every standard deviation increase in village CM score was associated with increased odds of reported HIV testing in intervention village participants (odds ratio: 2.6, P = <0.001) but not control village participants (odds ratio: 1.2, P = 0.53). Structural equation models demonstrate that the intervention affected HIV testing uptake through the individual intervention exposure received and higher personal mobilization scores. CONCLUSIONS:There was no evidence of community-wide gains in HIV testing due to the intervention. However, a significant intervention effect on HIV testing was noted in residents who were personally exposed to the intervention and who evidenced higher community mobilization. Research is needed to understand whether CM interventions can be diffused within communities over time.
Project description:Rural residents face numerous challenges in accessing quality health care for management of chronic diseases (eg, obesity, diabetes), including scarcity of health care services and insufficient public transport. Digital health interventions, which include modalities such as internet, smartphones, and monitoring sensors, may help increase rural residents' access to health care. While digital health interventions have become an increasingly popular intervention strategy to address obesity, research examining the use of technological tools for obesity management among rural Latino populations is limited. In this paper, we share our experience developing a culturally tailored, interactive health intervention using digital technologies for a family-oriented, weight management program in a rural, primarily Latino community. We describe the formative research that guided the development of the intervention, discuss the process of developing the intervention technologies including issues of privacy and data security, examine the results of a pilot study, and share lessons learned. Our experience can help others design user-centered digital health interventions to engage underserved populations in the uptake of healthy lifestyle and disease management skills.
Project description:Previous research has suggested differences between public and professional understanding of the field of environmental health (EH) and the role of EH services within urban and rural communities. This study investigated EH priority differences between 1) rural and urban residents and 2) residents and EH professionals, and presents quantitative and qualitative methods for establishing locality-specific EH priorities. Residents (N = 588) and EH professionals (N = 63) in Alabama identified EH priorities via a phone or online survey. We categorized rurality of participant residences by rural-urban commuting area codes and population density, and tested whether or not EH priorities were different between urban and rural residents. Built environment issues, particularly abandoned houses, and air pollution were high priorities for urban residents-whereas, water and sanitation issues, and paper mill-related pollution were high priorities in rural communities. EH professionals ranked food safety and water and sanitation issues as higher priorities than residents did. Results highlight the importance of urbanicity on environmental risk perception and the utility of simple and inexpensive engagement methods for understanding these differences. Differences between residents and EH professionals suggest improving stakeholder participation in local-level EH decision making might lead to greater awareness of EH services, which might in turn improve support and effectiveness of those services.
Project description:Obesity and other nutrition-related chronic disease rates are high in American Indian (AI) populations, and an urgent need exists to identify evidence-based strategies for prevention and treatment. Multi-level, multi-component (MLMC) interventions are needed, but there are significant knowledge gaps on how to deliver these types of interventions in low-income rural AI communities.OPREVENT2 is a MLMC intervention targeting AI adults living in six rural reservations in New Mexico and Wisconsin. Aiming to prevent and reduce obesity in adults by working at multiple levels of the food and physical activity (PA) environments, OPREVENT2 focuses on evidence-based strategies known to increase access to, demand for, and consumption of healthier foods and beverages, and increase worksite and home-based opportunities for PA. OPREVENT2 works to create systems-level change by partnering with tribal stakeholders, multiple levels of the food and PA environment (food stores, worksites, schools), and the social environment (children as change agents, families, social media). Extensive evaluation will be conducted at each level of the intervention to assess effectiveness via process and impact measures.Novel aspects of OPREVENT2 include: active engagement with stakeholders at many levels (policy, institutional, and at multiple levels of the food and PA system); use of community-based strategies to engage policymakers and other key stakeholders (community workshops, action committees); emphasis on both the built environment (intervening with retail food sources) and the social environment. This paper describes the design of the intervention and the evaluation plan of the OPREVENT2.Clinical Trial Registration: NCT02803853 (June 10, 2016).
Project description:BACKGROUND:Older adults are the least active population group. Interventions in residential settings may support a multi-level approach to behavior change. METHODS:In a cluster randomized control trial, 11 San Diego retirement communities were assigned to a physical activity (PA) intervention or a healthy aging attention control condition. Participants were 307 adults over 65 years old. The multilevel PA intervention was delivered with the assistance of peer leaders, who were trained older adult from the retirement communities. Intervention components included individual counseling & self-monitoring with pedometers, group education sessions, group walks, community advocacy and pedestrian community change projects. Intervention condition by time interactions were tested using generalized mixed effects regressions. The primary outcomes was accelerometer measured physical activity. Secondary outcomes were blood pressure and objectively measured physical functioning. RESULTS:Over 70% of the sample were 80 years or older. PA significantly increased in the intervention condition (56 min of moderate-vigorous PA per week; 119 min of light PA) compared with the control condition and remained significantly higher across the 12 month study. Men and participants under 84 years old benefited most from the intervention. There was a significant decrease in systolic (p?<?.007) and diastolic (p?<?.02) blood pressure at 6 months. Physical functioning improved but the changes were not statistically significant. CONCLUSIONS:Intervention fidelity was high demonstrating feasibility. Changes in PA and blood pressure achieved were comparable to other studies with much younger participants. Men, in particular, avoided a year-long decline in PA. TRIAL REGISTRATION:clincialtrials.gov Identifier: NCT01155011 .
Project description:Feasible and cost-effective as well as population specific instruments for monitoring physical activity (PA) levels are needed for the management and prevention of non-communicable diseases. The WHO-endorsed Global Physical Activity Questionnaire (GPAQ) has been widely used in developing countries, but the evidence base for its validity, particularly for rural populations, is still limited. The aim of the study was to validate GPAQ among rural and urban residents in Bangladesh.A total of 162 healthy participants of both genders aged 18-60 years were recruited from Satia village (n = 97) and Dhaka City (n = 65). Participants were invited to take part in the study and were asked to wear an accelerometer (GT3X) for 7 days, after which they were invited to answer the GPAQ in a face to face interview.Valid accelerometer data (i.e., ≥10 h of wear times over ≥3 days) were received from 155 participants (rural = 94, urban = 61). The mean age was 35 (SD = ±9) years, 55% were females and 19% of the participants had no schooling, which was higher in the rural area (21% vs 17%). The mean ± SD steps/day was 9998 ± 3936 (8658 ± 2788 and 12,063 ± 4534 for rural and urban respectively, p = 0.0001) and the mean ± SD daily moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) was 58 ± 30 min (51 ± 26 for rural and 69 ± 34 for the urban, p = 0.001) for accelerometer. In case of GPAQ, rural residents reported significantly higher moderate work related PA (MET-minutes/week: 600 vs. 360 p = 0.02). Spearman correlation coefficients between GPAQ total MVPA MET-min/day and accelerometer MVPA min/day, counts per minute (CPM) or steps counts/day were acceptable for urban residents (rho: 0.46, 0.55 and 0.63, respectively; p < 0.01) but poor for rural residents. The overall correlation between the GPAQ and accelerometer for sitting was low (rho: 0.23; p < 0.001). GPAQ-Accelerometer correlation for MVPA was higher for females (rho: 0.42), ≤35 age group (rho: 0.31) and those with higher education attainment (rho: 0.48). The Bland-Altman plots illustrated bias towards over estimation of GPAQ MVPA with increased activity levels for urban and rural residents.GPAQ is an acceptable measure for physical activity surveillance in Bangladesh particularly for urban residents, women and people with high education. Given waist worn accelerometers do not capture the typical PA in rural context, further study using a physical activity diary and a combination of multiple sensors (e.g., wrist, ankle and waist worn accelerometers) to capture all movement is warranted among rural population with purposive sampling of all education levels.
Project description:Multilevel and multimodal interventions have been suggested for suicide prevention. However, few studies have reported the outcomes of such interventions for suicidal behaviours.We examined the effectiveness of a community-based multimodal intervention for suicide prevention in rural areas with high suicide rates, compared with a parallel prevention-as-usual control group, covering a total of 631,133 persons. The effectiveness was also examined in highly populated areas near metropolitan cities (1,319,972 persons). The intervention started in July 2006, and continued for 3.5 years. The primary outcome was the incidence of composite outcome, consisting of completed suicides and suicide attempts requiring admission to an emergency ward for critical care. We compared the rate ratios (RRs) of the outcomes adjusted by sex, age group, region, period and interaction terms. Analyses were performed on an intention-to-treat basis and stratified by sex and age groups.In the rural areas, the overall median adherence of the intervention was significantly higher. The RR of the composite outcome in the intervention group decreased 7% compared with that of the control group. Subgroup analyses demonstrated heterogeneous effects among subpopulations: the RR of the composite outcome in the intervention group was significantly lower in males (RR = 0.77, 95% CI 0.59-0.998, p = 0.0485) and the RR of suicide attempts was significantly lower in males (RR = 0.39, 95% CI 0.22-0.68, p = 0.001) and the elderly (RR = 0.35, 95% CI 0.17-0.71, p = 0.004). The intervention had no effect on the RR of the composite outcome in the highly populated areas.Our findings suggest that this community-based multimodal intervention for suicide prevention could be implemented in rural areas, but not in highly populated areas. The effectiveness of the intervention was shown for males and for the elderly in rural areas.ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00737165 UMIN Clinical Trials Registry UMIN000000460.