Community-Based Healthy Aging Interventions for Older Adults with Arthritis and Multimorbidity

Janice C. Zgibor, Lei Ye, Robert M. Boudreau, Molly B. Conroy, Joni Vander Bilt, Elizabeth A. Rodgers, Elizabeth A. Schlenk, Mini E. Jacob, Jane Brandenstein, Steven M. Albert, Anne B. Newman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Examine the impact of programs led by community health workers on health and function in older adults with arthritis and other health conditions. We conducted a cluster-randomized trial of the Arthritis Foundation Exercise Program (AFEP) enhanced with the “10 Keys”™ to Healthy Aging compared with the AFEP program at 54 sites in 462 participants (mean age 73 years, 88 % women, 80 % white). Trained Community health workers delivered the 10-week programs. Outcomes assessed after 6 months included physical performance [Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB)], Western Ontario and McMaster Universities (WOMAC) Osteoarthritis Index, and preventive health behaviors. Both groups experienced improvements. Performance improved by 0.3 SPPB points in the AFEP/“10 Keys”™ group and 0.5 in AFEP alone; WOMAC scores declined by 3.0 and 3.9 points respectively. More participants had controlled hypertension at 6 months in both groups (60.1 % baseline to 76.7 % in AFEP/10 Keys and from 76.5 to 84.9 % in AFEP alone) and greater diabetes control (from 15.0 to 34.9 and 15.5 to 34.1 %, respectively). These community-based programs showed similar improvements in preventive health, mobility and arthritis outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)390-399
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Community Health
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Arthritis
  • Behavioral interventions
  • Cluster randomization
  • Community health workers
  • Comorbidity
  • Healthy aging
  • Multimorbidity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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