ACTivation on Chronic Disease Program


The ACT on Chronic Disease program is based on previous experience and success in training paid home care staff to deliver better, more integrated, chronic disease management.

We address chronic disease management because unstable chronic disease is common in home care, the source of most home care client health instability and changing caregiver stress, and the most unsupported caregiver skill. Our informal caregivers are not provided with essential chronic disease management skills that would reduce the risk of functional compromise related to the symptoms of chronic disease.  

Objective and Goal

Building on previous pilot work, McMaster University will develop, test, and deploy a train-the-trainer program that will prepare home care staff to facilitate use of informal caregiver tools, resources, and decision aids. This will provide informal caregivers with the general skills to address symptoms in chronic disease management. The program’s goal is to improve informal caregiver knowledge, confidence, and activation while decreasing anxiety and distress. 

For the success of the program, continued collaboration between home care providers, healthcare experts, educators, and researchers is needed to provide informal caregivers with the essential skills to address unstable chronic conditions. This program will be aligned, synergistic, and supportive of all partners.

Content of the Program

The ACT on Chronic Disease Program contains the following in-person training components that will be delivered in the home, including:

1. Signs of instability and symptom management,

2. Medication administration and management,

3. Communication with care providers,

4. Advance care planning, and

5. Safe and effective strategies for activity and exercise.



Team Lead

Andrew P. Costa, PhD | McMaster University

Team Members

Connie Schumacher, RN PhD | McMaster University, HNHB LHIN

Darly Dash, MSc | McMaster University

Lindsay Klea, BA | McMaster University

Graham Campbell, MA | McMaster University



This is a collaboration between caregivers, researchers, clinicians, and provincial partners.


MOHLTC logo black.png

Learn More