WANTED: participants for text message support program

SupportMe team: Prof Wah Cheung, Gilly Rosic, Prof Clara Chow & Sonia Faruquie.

Do you have heart disease or type 2 diabetes?

Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD) wants you!

Researchers from WSLHD are on the hunt for western Sydney residents to participate in its SupportMe program, a text messaging system designed to help participants improve their blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose.

SupportMe sends participants text messages every week for 12 months, offering health tips specific to their disease, including advice, motivation, information and support.

Westmead Hospital Prof Clara Chow is running the trial, which follows the successful TEXTME program that provided text message support for patients with coronary heart disease.

The trial had shown participants had better control of their blood pressure and cholesterol, had increased their physical activity and reduced smoking, Prof Chow said.

“These programs allow us to use technology to help improve the health of people in western Sydney,” she said.

“Diabetes and heart disease are major health issues in our region – SupportMe allows us to provide customised and personalised education to help patients self-manage their condition.

“Messages are sent at different times of the day and offer everything from advice about monitoring risk factors, tips on healthy eating and physical activity, and advice on managing medications and insulin.

“Examples of messages include: “Have you got a chest pain action plan? Find ideas at www.heartfoundation.org.au” or “Aerobic exercise can include walking, running, cycling and swimming – these help lower blood sugar.”

Western Sydney residents are invited to participate in the free program if they have either coronary heart disease or type 2 diabetes, are aged over 18 and have a mobile phone.

To sign up for the trial, contact the SupportMe team on (02) 8890 9818 or email WSLHD-SupportMe@health.nsw.gov.au

Visit www.support-me.com.au for more information.



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