Online Program

Process Evaluation of a Worksite Physical Activity Program for Employees at Risk for Cardiovascular Disease: Implications for practice

Monday, November 2, 2015

Ghadah Alshuwaiyer, PhD, PT, School of Health Sciences, Stephens College, Columbia, MO
E. Laurette Taylor, PhD, Dept. of Health and Exercise Science, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK
Paul Wesley Branscum, PhD, RD, Department of Health and Exercise Science, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK
Introduction: Cardiovascular disease is a major issue for today’s workforce. While worksite wellness programs can increase physical activity among employees most research on such programs focuses on program outcomes, and little work has been done documenting implementation fidelity and other process evaluation issues.

Purpose: To evaluate implementation process for a 12-week physical activity (PA) program among university employees.

Methods: Inactive employees (40-64 years) with dyslipidemia were randomly assigned to a Walking-Only (WO) or Walking-Plus (WP) intervention. Both groups received instructions to engage in progressive walking, however, the WP group received additional instructions to interrupt long bouts of sedentary time (2-minute break every 30 minutes). Groups were asked to join a Facebook support group, submit weekly logs, and received periodic motivational emails and phone calls. Response rates to program activities, such as online surveys, phone calls, and emails were tracked throughout the program. At the end of the program, participants’ attitudes about the program were evaluated through a semi-formal interview.

Results: WP group (WP=54.5% vs. WO=50%) had a better compliance for log submissions but the WO group had better phone communication. Both groups had low response rates to motivational emails (WP=20% vs. WO=18%). The WP group had better compliance for accelerometer wear time (≥10 hours/day for 7 days) compared to the WO group.

Conclusion: Overall, participants showed poorer adherence to the program than expected due to time constrains, work commitments, difficulty wearing evaluation devices, and difficulty reaching the PA recommendations. To ensure compliance, we recommend providing tangible incentives throughout the program.

Learning Areas:

Chronic disease management and prevention
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
Evaluate the implementation process for a worksite physical activity program. Evaluate employees' compliance with the recommendation of the physical activity program.

Keyword(s): Physical Activity, Evaluation

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the principal and co-principals investigator for multiple studies that focused on promoting physical activity, and decreasing diabetes and cardiovascular disease risks. Among my scientific interests has been the evulation of programs that focus on promoting physical activity and decreasing sedentary time among individuals who are at risks for cardiovascular disease.
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.