Peer Health Coaching Improves Well-Being in Veterans With CVD Risks

In HealthDay News
by Healthday

However, peer health coaching not tied to improvements in blood pressure

By Lori Solomon HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, June 7, 2023 (HealthDay News) — Peer health coaching interventions can create opportunities for well-being improvements, although not physical health improvements, in veterans with cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors, according to a study published online June 6 in JAMA Network Open.

Karin M. Nelson, M.D., from the Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System in Seattle, and colleagues assessed the effectiveness of a home-visit, peer health coaching intervention to improve health outcomes for veterans with multiple CVD risks. The analysis included 264 participants randomly assigned to health coaching for 12 months or usual care plus educational materials.

The researchers observed no differences in change in systolic blood pressure between the two groups (−3.32 mm Hg versus −0.40 mm Hg; adjusted difference in differences, −2.05 mm Hg). Compared with the control group, participants in the intervention group reported greater improvements in mental health-related quality of life (HRQOL) scores (adjusted difference in differences, 3.64 points). There was no difference observed in physical HRQOL scores, Framingham Risk Scores, or overall CVD risk or health care use.

“Among veterans, the peer support model may be especially effective due to the shared military experience and camaraderie of veterans,” the authors write. “Providing social support via veteran peer health coaches of similar socioeconomic and military backgrounds who live in the same neighborhoods may be one model that can improve patient HRQOL.”

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