Effectiveness of self-management programmes for adolescents with a chronic illness: A systematic review

Jaunna Gauci, Jacqueline Bloomfield, Sharon Lawn, Susan Towns, Katharine Steinbeck

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    4 Citations (Scopus)


    Aim: To assess what is known about the effectiveness of face-to-face self-management programmes designed specifically for adolescents (10–19 years) with a chronic illness. Design: A systematic review and synthesis without meta-analysis (SWiM). Data sources: Six international web-based reference libraries were searched with a date range of 1946 to July 2020. Review method: The PRISMA statement and SWiM guideline were used for reporting the methods and results. The PICO format was used to develop a focused clinical question and the eligibility criteria of our review. Quality assessment of the included studies was performed using the Cochrane Effective Practice Organisation of Care criteria. Results: Eight studies (four randomized controlled trials and four descriptive designs) met the inclusion criteria and were published between 2003 and 2017. Results of the review: Three studies demonstrated measures of illness control which showed initial improvements in adherence as a result of the interventions but failed to demonstrate sustained adherence over time. Booster sessions were identified as an effective strategy to improve adherence, but were often omitted. Conclusions: There is a limited body of evidence on the effectiveness of self-management programmes specifically developed for adolescents with a chronic illness, an important but under researched area. Future research lies in the development of more rigorous studies that focus on quantitative outcome measures for evaluating the effectiveness of self-management programmes to guide the development of future programmes. Impact: It is crucial for adolescents with a chronic illness to develop independence and the self-management skills required to effectively manage their chronic condition as they transition to adulthood. On current evidence, in planning future self-management interventions should include booster sessions. Nurses with additional training and experience have a key role in supporting adolescents with a chronic illness to develop self-management skills as they assume responsibility for their own healthcare.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)3585-3599
    Number of pages15
    JournalJournal of Advanced Nursing
    Issue number9
    Early online date25 Feb 2021
    Publication statusPublished - Sep 2021


    • adolescent
    • chronic illness
    • concordance
    • nursing
    • patient compliance
    • patient education
    • self-management
    • systematic review
    • therapy adherence


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