Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP)

woman teaching in front of a class of adults

About the program: The Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP) is a workshop for adults with at least one chronic health condition, which may include arthritis. It focuses on disease management skills including decision making, problem-solving, and action planning.


This interactive program aims to increase:

  • Confidence
  • Physical and psychological well-being
  • Knowledge of ways to manage chronic conditions
  • Motivation to manage challenges associated with chronic diseases

Target Audience:

  • Adults with arthritis
  • Adults with one or more chronic conditions
  • Older adults

Key Activities:

  • Interactive educational activities like discussions, brain storming, practice of action-planning and feedback, behavior modeling, problem-solving techniques, and decision making
  • Also includes symptom management activities like exercise, relaxation, communication, healthy eating, medication management, and managing fatigue

Setting: Community/ Group-based workshop

Suggested class size: Between 10 and 16 participants

Duration: Participants meet for two hours once a week, for six weeks


  • Participant costs: Varies, but rarely more than $50 per participant
  • Leader/ Host Costs:
    • License costs for the host organization for between $500 and $12,000 depending on the organization’s needs.
    • Leader training at between $200 and $400 per leader training

Program Requirements:

  • Two leaders per workshop. These leaders can either be two peer health leaders or one health professional and one peer leader. At least one of the leaders should have a chronic condition.
  • Leaders must be trained by the Self-Management Resource Center either in the San Francisco Bay Area or locally by a certified master trainer. Each training is four and a half days and taught in English or Spanish.
  • A license purchased from the Self-Management Resource Center renewed every three years
  • A community space that’s Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessible, with enough space for leaders, participants, flip charts, a white board, and comfortable chairs
  • Equipment: flip charts, markers, and a music player

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