Evidence-based health and well-being for entire populations.

Pro-Change Awarded Grant to Develop Tobacco App Integrated with Electronic Health Records

Pro-Change was recently awarded a grant from the NIH’s National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute to transform its existing digital Tobacco Cessation solution into a HealthKit-enabled app integrated into electronic health records (EHR). The app will leverage Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resource (FHIR) standards to:

  1. Implement a full range of best practices in tailored health behavior change nudges;
  2. Deliver hyper-personalized behavior change guidance based on Apple’s HealthKit data regarding medical history and conditions; and
  3. Automatically provide key actionable insights to the EHR with micro-messages clinicians can deliver to accelerate a patient’s behavior change progress.

The interoperability of this digital therapeutic for tobacco cessation will provide value to both patients and clinicians; empower and support lasting behavior change; and enable the implementation and evaluation of a best-in-class approach to tobacco treatment by removing barriers to accessing data-driven insights at the point of care. This is especially important as tobacco use remains the leading preventable cause of death in the U.S., contributing to more than 480,000 premature deaths annually.

Like Pro-Change’s existing evidence-based, mobile-optimized Tobacco Cessation solution, the app will address combustible cigarette smoking, smokeless tobacco, and electronic nicotine delivery systems (e-cigarettes or vapes).

“This app will facilitate the successful implementation of digital, tailored tobacco cessation interventions in clinical settings,” said Dr. Sara S. Johnson, Co-President and CEO of Pro-Change and the study’s principal investigator. “Given the extensive end-user input we will obtain, this research could also provide critical insights to inform care models using patient-generated health data for other health behavior apps. We’re looking forward to leveraging interoperability standards to provide critical lifestyle medicine insights to clinicians in a readily accessible format.”

This research is supported by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number R43HL156588. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.

Health Coaches Can Earn Continuing Education Credits for Pro-Change’s Online Training

Pro-Change has taken another step forward with our online course, Become an Agent of Change: Applying the Transtheoretical Model of Behavior Change. Upon completing the course, health coaches can now earn 2 hours of continuing education (CEs) from the National Board for Health & Wellness Coaching (NBHWC CEP #100197). So now’s the time to learn more about the Transtheoretical Model of Behavior Change (a.k.a. the stages of change model) and how to effectively apply it when working with clients and patients to promote successful behavior change!

And now for the next step…in the future, we plan to offer CEs for taking the online course for other disciplines as well. Are there areas for which you might be seeking CEs? If so, let us know at training@prochange.com.

Learn More About Pro-Change’s Online Training

In Other News…

Pro-Change Behavior Systems Inc. is proud to have been named a Top Vendor in Health Assessments by Shortlister for the first quarter of 2021. Pro-Change was selected based upon its business performance, market presence, company size and stability. 

Johnson’s Editorial on Racial Equity Named Paper of the Year

Pro-Change’s Co-President and CEO, Dr. Sara Johnson, was honored that her recent editorialEquity, Justice, and the Role of the Health Promotion Profession in Dismantling Systemic Racism,” was named “Paper of the Year” by the American Journal of Health Promotion.

This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to make real the promise of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksand of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God’s children. It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment. — Dr. Martin Luther King

In the editorial, Johnson tackles the complex issue of addressing systemic racism. She examines a variety of issues including the racism BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) face in their places of work, the growing income inequality that disproportionately affects black and brown communities, and how the COVID-19 crisis has compounded those issues. Recognizing that racism is a public health issue, Johnson outlines some preliminary steps individuals and organizations can take to be true allies and to continually strive to be anti-racist. Like many other organizations, Pro-Change is making a concerted effort to make progress on its anti-racist journey.

As Johnson wrote, “Together, we can create an equitable and racially just future where everyone can thrive. Now is the time.”

Lifestyle for Small Business

Award-winning, affordable, programs for all

As a small business itself, Pro-Change recognizes the unique challenges smaller organizations face in ensuring the well-being of their employees, clients, and partners. For this reason, we created an offering specifically tailored to the needs of small businesses. Lifestyle for Small Business offers unlimited usage of Pro-Change’s most popular, science-backed online behavior change programs for a single annual fee.


Lifestyle for Small Business also includes our most popular features—Social Login and text-messages that provide micro-motivational nudges—at no additional cost.

Also included is on-demand aggregate reporting so small business owners can track their organization’s behavior changes and health improvements over time.

For more information and purchasing info: https://www.prochange.com/lifestyle-purchasing-and-use-agreement

Staying Resilient in a Stressful Election Season

Regardless of their political affiliations, feeling anxious and stressed over elections is nothing new to Americans. In 2016, Washington-based therapist Dr. Steven Stonsy coined the term “Election Stress Disorder” to describe the rise in irritability, resentment, anxiety, and sense of powerlessness people feel in the weeks and months surrounding an election. Unfortunately, Election Stress Disorder seems to be at an all-time high, due in part to the rise in smartphone usage, the prevalence of social media in everyday life, and the 24-hour news cycle. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to reduce and manage election stress!

Two key elements of coping with Election Stress Disorder and staying resilient are maintaining your social connections and practicing mindfulness. According to Dr. Stonsy, “The best antidote is connection” and “Underlying all of that (anxiety) is powerlessness.… The rule (for enhancing) power is focus.”

If you find yourself getting stressed and anxious over the election, try reaching out to those around you, either via a socially-distanced meet-up, a Zoom call, or even just a quick phone call or text. Try giving those in your social bubble a hug or telling a friend you appreciate them. And while the quality of your social connections matter more than the quantity, activities such as volunteering can be a great way to expand your network with the added benefit of helping others! You may even be able to volunteer at your local polling place!

You can also practice mindfulness. Mindfulness is all about being present in the moment. Certain activities such as journaling, meditation, and yoga can help you achieve mindfulness. If you don’t have time for a structured mindful activity, take a moment, clear your mind, and turn your attention to your breathing. Do not think about the election, the future, or the “what ifs” in life. Our minds have a tendency to stray toward the negative but when you focus on the negative thoughts, you give those in your life more power than the positive thoughts. Take just a few moments each day to focus on and be grateful for whatever is right now.

And, of course, vote if you haven’t already!

Pro-Change Launches Updated Online Course

Are you interested in learning more about the Transtheoretical Model (TTM) of Behavior Change (Stages of Change model) and how to apply it to both your work and personal life? Pro-Change’s new online course, Become an Agent of Change: Applying the Transtheoretical Model of Behavior Change, provides individuals, coaches, and other health professionals with the basic concepts and strategies needed to effectively use the TTM when working with clients to promote successful behavior change.

By the end of the 2-hour course, you will be able to assess an individual’s stage of change and know which behavior change strategies to employ in order to assist people in moving to the next stage of change. The skills you will gain are applicable to any behavior, enabling you to work with entire populations regardless of their readiness to change.

After completing the course, recent users have called the online course “one of the best online trainings I’ve ever completed.” They have also said it is a “great course and easy to understand!”; is “clear and comprehensive”; “well planned and executed”; and that it “can be beneficial for my workplace and my personal life.”

What will YOU say about Pro-Change’s online course? Try the free preview today!

In Other News…

Check out the latest issue of The American Journal of Health Promotion for Dr. Sara Johnson’s editorial on “Equity, Justice, and the Role of the Health Promotion Profession in Dismantling Systemic Racism

This month’s issue also contains the latest issue of Knowing Well, Being Well on The Future of Work.

Pro-Change Receives $1.5 Million Grant for Innovative Substance Use Intervention

Approximately 21 million Americans over the age of 12 need substance use treatment. However, only 11% of those who need treatment receive it. Given that two-thirds of those with a substance-use disorder regularly seek primary care, Pro-Change is addressing the gaps in substance use treatment by integrating behavior change science into a Screening; Brief Intervention; Referral for Treatment (SBIRT) program for patients at federally qualified health centers.

Built using previous funding from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), Pro-Change’s Connect2BWell program will undergo additional development and be tested in a nine-month randomized clinical trial. Connect2BWell includes a variety of digital intervention components for both patients and providers.

Patients at-risk receive a brief assessment and intervention based upon the Transtheoretical Model of Behavior Change to determine readiness to quit their most problematic drug and readiness to seek treatment. Patients also receive tailored text messages and access to customized online activities.

Through an integration with the federally qualified health center’s electronic health record, the intervention delivers a provider facing Clinical Dashboard that summarizes the patient’s substance use risk scores and stage of change data, and provides stage-matched scripts and action steps to guide a brief in-person intervention session.

“Pro-Change is thrilled to be able to continue our long history of innovative program development to address unmet needs in substance use treatment.”– Dr. Kerry Evers, Pro-Change Co-President & CEO.

This research is supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number R44DA044840. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.

In Other News…

You can find us in Mediaplanet’s Future of Work campaign! This campaign aims to bring attention to those organizations and individuals helping provide resources and advice to business owners and workers to help them succeed. View Dr. Sara Johnson & Karen Moseley of HERO’s article on Why A Remote Workplace Needs Strong Social Connections.

Pro-Change Launches Inspiragrams to Promote Well-Being

We all continue to strive to create a new normal amid this rapidly evolving, unprecedented public health crisis. Recognizing that so many are faced with challenges at home, work, and in essentially every other aspect of daily life, Pro-Change wanted to do what we could to help. That’s why we’ve launched Inspiragramsa free text messaging program to deliver a daily dose of inspiration.

The messages address all aspects of well-being. It is our sincere hope that they will play a small role in lifting your mood; encouraging you to maintain your social connections despite being physically distanced; and reminding you that, despite the trials we are all facing, there are steps we can take to preserve our overall well-being. Collectively, we can focus on the positive as we work together to protect each other by staying home.

Want to give it a try? Text INSPIRE to 401.205.3898

Please feel free to spread the word.

Small but Mighty: Pro-Change Re-Certified as a Women Owned Small Business

Pro-Change Behavior Systems, Inc. is proud to announce national recertification as a Women’s Business Enterprise and a Women-Owned Small Business by the Center for Women & Enterprise, a certifying partner of the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council. The rigorous certification process ensures that Pro-Change is a small business owned, operated and controlled by women.

Now more than ever, the importance of small businesses in the U.S. economy cannot be understated. In 2016, small businesses (those with less than 500 employees) accounted for 99.9% of all U.S. businesses, employed 47.3% of all private U.S. employees, and created 1.8 million net jobs.[1] Women entrepreneurs are also an essential part of the American economy. In 2012, women-owned businesses contributed over $1.4 trillion in sales and 8.4 million jobs, paying more than $450 billion in salary and wages.[2]

“Small businesses are a recognized proving ground for entrepreneurs, a vibrant source of innovation and competition, and an essential source of employment. They are suppliers and customers to the broader economy and deeply embedded in local communities.”[3]

Pro-Change has a proven passion when it comes to creating innovative solutions for today’s modern problems. Our solutions address everything from caregiver well-being and chronic pain self-management to digital addiction, social determinants of health, e-cigarette use, and financial well-being. Learn more about Pro-Change’s novel behavior change programs.

P.S. In an effort to support fellow small businesses, Pro-Change is developing a small business offering that will be tailored to meet the needs of organizations of all sizes. Stay tuned for more details…

About WBENC:

Founded in 1997, WBENC is the nation’s leader in women’s business development and the leading third-party certifier of businesses owned and operated by women, with more than 13,000 certified Women’s Business Enterprises, 14 national Regional Partner Organizations, and over 300 Corporate Members. More than 1,000 corporations representing America’s most prestigious brands as well as many states, cities, and other entities accept WBENC Certification. For more information, visit www.wbenc.org

 

[1]  United States Small Business Profile, 2019. (2019). United States Small Business Profile, 2019. Retrieved from https://cdn.advocacy.sba.gov/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/23142719/2019-Small-Business-Profiles-US.pdf
[2] McManus, M. J. (2017). Women’s Business Ownership: Data from the 2012 Survey of Business Owners. U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy. Retrieved from https://cdn.advocacy.sba.gov/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/22154543/Womens-Business-Ownership-in-the-US.pdf
[3] Dua, A., Jain, N., Mahajan, D., & Velasco, Y. (2020, May 5). COVID-19’s effect on jobs at small businesses in the United States. Retrieved May 27, 2020, from https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/social-sector/our-insights/covid-19s-effect-on-jobs-at-small-businesses-in-the-united-states#0

Dr. Sara Johnson Named Chair of Art & Science of Health Promotion Conference

Pro-Change Behavior Systems is pleased to announce that their Co-President & CEO, Dr. Sara Johnson, has been appointed Chair of the Art and Science of Health Promotion Conference. In her capacity as Chair, Dr. Johnson will be responsible for the educational content of the conference and serve as Master of Ceremonies, beginning with the 2021 conference. 

The purpose of the Art & Science of Health Promotion Conference is to maximize the effectiveness of health promotion in the U.S. and globally through the application of lessons learned from rigorous research and practice. The conference has a thirty-year legacy of presenting scientific expertise and practical experience on the science of lifestyle change. Last year, they joined forces with The International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans, a premier educational organization with more than 32,000 members dedicated to improving employee benefits education. 

Dr. Johnson is succeeding Dr. Michael O’Donnell, who chaired the conference for 30 years. The 31st Art and Science of Health Promotion Conference will be held March 29-April 2, 2021 at the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, CO. The conference theme relates to how health promotion will adapt to stem the rising tide of pervasive, daunting challenges facing society (e.g., the aftermath of the COVID-19 crisis; epidemics of loneliness; mental health and substance use disorders; unmet social needs; and chronic illnesses) in the context of our rapidly evolving and increasingly decentralized workforce.

Hope to see you there!