245912 Impact of Telephonic Wellness Coaching on Weight Loss among a Commercially Insured Population

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Krishna Rangarajan, MPH , Clinical Epidemiolgy and Biostatistics, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Southfield, MI
Min Tao, PhD , Clinical Epidemiolgy and Biostatistics, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Southfield, MI
James Stephens, MS , Medical Informatics, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Southfield, MI
Elizabeth Wasilevich, PhD, MPH , Clinical Epidemiolgy and Biostatistics, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Southfield, MI
Michael Paustian, MS , Clinical Epidemiolgy and Biostatistics, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Southfield, MI
Objective: Blue Cross Blue Shield of MI offers a nurse-administered telephonic wellness coaching program for members with identified risk factors. The program offers motivational interviewing for improved nutrition and increased physical activity for those identified as being overweight. The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of this program on participant's weight.

Methods: Eligible participants for the program were identified based on their responses to an online health assessment. Between 2008-2010, 1,383 targeted respondents were overweight/obese at baseline and completed a 1-year follow-up questionnaire. For this population, we compared the self-reported weight loss for participants (n=1,003) versus non-participants (380) using a paired t-test and multivariable linear regression, adjusting for sociodemographic characteristics and self-motivation in losing weight. Self-reported height from the baseline and follow-up questionnaires were compared to test data reliability.

Results: Among those targeted 759 (54%) were male and 1,238 (89%) were white. Participants on average lost 1.6 lbs between baseline and follow-up (t=-4.24, p <0.001); there was no significant weight loss for non-participants (t= 1.09, p=0.278). Results from the multivariable linear regression model indicated that participants of the program lost an average 2.3 lbs more than non-participants ( = -2.30, p = 0.002) after adjusting for other factors.

Conclusion: Participants in a telephonic wellness coaching program who were classified as overweight/obese reported small, but significantly more weight loss than non-participants. Further research will assess the degree to which recall bias and motivated volunteer bias have affected these results.

Learning Areas:
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning

Learning Objectives:
Evaluate the effectivness of a telephonic wellness coaching intervention on reducing body weight for individuals who are considered overweight or obese based on Body Mass Index.

Keywords: Obesity, Wellness

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I work closely with the data analyzed, perform all analyses and have an intimate knowledge of the wellness coaching progarm offered at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.