The Coastal Regional Commission Area Agency on Aging is offering a free workshop focused on chronic disease management.
“Living Well Coastal,” a six-session workshop series, is designed to help those in the Coastal Georgia region with chronic health conditions improve their function, reduce pain, fatigue and anxiety, cope with medications, communicate more effectively with their physicians and regain control of their lives.
The first series of workshops are set for 1:30 p.m.-4 p.m. every Tuesday from Feb. 21-March 27 in the Richmond Hill Recreation Association Gym on Timber Trail Road.
The second series is 1:30 p.m.-4 p.m. every Wednesday from Feb. 22-March 28 at the Richmond Hill branch of YMCA of Coastal Georgia at 154 Thunderbird Drive.
The workshops are designed to help adults 18 and older as well as their caregivers. Based on the program developed by the Stanford University School of Medicine Patient Education Research Center, the “Living Well Coastal” series helps participants make an action plan that addresses concerns and breaks down ultimate goals into smaller, more manageable steps.
For more information or to attend the first series, call 1-800-580-6860. To attend the second series, call 756-5856.
The Coastal Health District, which covers the and surrounding areas, reported that six out of the top 10 leading causes of death in the region involved chronic conditions such as heart disease and stroke, diabetes, cancer, kidney and respiratory disease. Although arthritis was not among the leading causes of mortality, it is prevalent among the aging population of coastal counties and causes significant pain, and loss of mobility and independence.
Those who have completed self-management workshops reported fewer doctor visits as well as hospitalizations since the concept was launched in 1992. According to AARP, if a conservative estimate of $500 per patient could be saved as a result of 10 percent of the nation’s estimated 133 million chronic disease patients enrolling in a program such as “Living Well Coastal,” the savings of health care costs would result in $6.65 billion in a year.