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Designing a Resource Guide to help promote health in caregiving


  • Mary Hobbs Leenerts PhD, RN,

  • Cynthia S. Teel PhD, RN,

  • Gayle Shafton MS, RN, NP

Mary Hobbs Leenerts
University of Kansas School of Nursing
University of Kansas Medical Center
3901 Rainbow Boulevard
Kansas City KS 66160 USA
Telephone: +1 913/588-3377


Aim.  To describe development of a Resource Guide, one component of a theory-based intervention. The Guide contains information and ideas to illuminate caregivers’ self-care knowledge as a basis for organizing and reinforcing self-care activities.

Background.  Inherent in the complexity of caregiving roles is the emergence of caregiving as a responsibility, often overshadowing caregiver's personal care needs. Health care professionals can partner with caregivers to promote caregiver health. Self-Care TALK is a multimodal intervention to support this partnership.

Methods.  Two theoretical perspectives guided Resource Guide content; adult learning theory and the schema model of cognitive behavioural theory. Materials to stimulate conversations about caregivers' personal concerns about self-care were adapted from extant literature. Sources of information were chosen based on caregivers' learning needs and images of health. Areas of development focused on content, reading level/readability, graphic design, and self-evaluation.

Results.  The Resource Guide standardizes Self-Care TALK protocol while personalizing caregivers' self-care. The Resource Guide provides structure for conversations about what self-care is and ways to promote health.

Conclusion.  The Resource Guide promotes a learning environment that complements interests and experiences of older caregivers. Use of the Guide supports and extends caregivers' self-care vocabularies, and helps clarify self-care schemas and health promotion.