Obesity is a major health problem in the United States and associated with increased risk of diabetes. While many behavioral interventions have led to successful short-term weight loss, very few programs focus on weight loss maintenance after intentional loss, and fewer still are applicable to routine health care settings. There is a great need for interventions that can assist with long-term maintenance of healthy body weight and be sustainably integrated into existing health care teams. The investigators have developed and tested an innovative weight loss maintenance intervention – Maintaining Activity and Nutrition through Technology-Assisted Innovation in Primary Care (MAINTAIN-pc) – delivered through the electronic health record (EHR) to help patients maintain recent intentional weight loss and successful lifestyle strategies.
The investigators have conducted and published a randomized clinical trial of MAINTAIN-pc at the University of Pittsburgh and found that participants who received EHR tracking tools and personalized coaching had significantly lower weight regain at 24 months (primary outcome) than participants who received EHR tracking tools alone. MAINTAIN-pc leveraged commonly available health information technology (HIT) tools to track participant progress and support patients and their providers in ongoing efforts to maintain weight loss. The investigators used an EHR platform (Epic) employed by many health care systems nationwide and integrated many parts of the MAINTAIN-pc protocol (e.g., patient identification, provider updates) with routine clinic workflow.
Despite the success of MAINTAIN-pc, two key questions about the practicality and sustainability of this intervention remain unanswered: (i) whether the HIT could be adapted at other sites and (ii) whether coaching could be delivered leveraging existing staff resources rather than interventionists supported by a research grant. The investigators propose a pragmatic clinical trial to test the implementation and impact of the MAINTAIN-pc protocol in routine health care settings: MAINTAIN PRIME (Promoting Real (World) IMplEmentation). MAINTAIN PRIME will be conducted in 14 primary care practices affiliated with the University of Utah and will capitalize on further advances in HIT (e.g., dashboards to track patient populations) and team-based care models to deliver the intervention with minimal support from research staff. The investigators will measure costs to inform future sustainability, and study workflow and individual, clinical, and organizational attributes to determine facilitators and barriers to successful implementation. With assistance from an External Advisory Board, the investigators will assemble an Implementation Toolkit of HIT and clinical resources to aid further dissemination.
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