Randomized control trial of the health empowerment intervention: Feasibility and impact

Nelma Shearer, Julie D. Fleury, Michael Belyea

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Older adults prefer to stay in their homes for as long as possible but are often unaware of the resources in their community to help them to remain in their home. Access to resources may be important among older adults, representing a critical area for intervention. OBJECTIVES: The study aim was to evaluate the feasibility of the Health Empowerment Intervention (HEI) and to explore the impact of the HEI on the theoretical mediating variables of health empowerment and purposeful participation in goal attainment and the outcome variable of well-being with homebound older adults. METHOD: Fifty-nine eligible homebound older adults were randomly assigned to the intervention group or the comparison group. The HEI consisted of 6 weekly visits, whereas the comparison group received a weekly newsletter for 6 weeks. Participants were measured at baseline, after the 6-week protocol, and at 12 weeks. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, t test, X2, and analysis of covariance. RESULTS: There was a significant difference between groups in education. The participants in the intervention found the sessions to be helpful in recognizing resources. In addition, participants in the intervention group had significantly higher scores in the mediator purposeful participation in goal attainment, F(2, 83) = 3.71, p = .03. There was no significant main effect for the mediator health empowerment; however, the intervention group increased in the subscale personal growth from baseline to 12 weeks, F(1, 83) = 3.88, p = .05. DISCUSSION: This randomized control trial provided initial support for the hypothesis that homebound older adults receiving the HEI would find the intervention acceptable and have significantly improved health empowerment, purposeful participation in goal attainment, and well-being than an attentional comparison group receiving a weekly newsletter.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)203-211
Number of pages9
JournalNursing research
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Adults
  • Aging
  • Empowerment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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