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150 slots remain in FREE on-line program that helps people with chronic diseases manage their symptoms and take control of their health
TRENTON – Now through October 31, a limited number of New Jersey residents with persistent health conditions can enroll for free in an on-line chronic disease self-management program that has proven effective in minimizing symptoms and helping participants take control of their health.The program, Better Choices, Better Health™, helps people with arthritis, asthma, diabetes, lung disease, heart disease, stroke, osteoporosis and many other chronic conditions.  Interested residents can register at  Spaces are limited to the first 150 registrants.

“Nearly half of all adults live with one or more recurring health conditions,” said Department of Human Services (DHS) Commissioner Jennifer Velez. “This on-line program represents a convenient way for people to develop the confidence and skills they need to manage their illnesses and it’s a unique opportunity to use technology to improve health outcomes.”

Developed and tested at the Stanford University Patient Education Center, the on-line workshop is offered exclusively through a license from National Council on Aging (NCOA).  The free slots now being offered to New Jersey residents were funded by a grant from the U.S. Administration of Aging through the NJ Department of Human Services.

Better Choices, Better Health™ helps participants reduce their pain and a wide range of symptoms and conditions.  Led by trained instructors, participants together address topics such as stress reduction, dealing with difficult emotions, nutrition, exercise, planning for the future, building communication skills, and asking for help.

Participants can login from any computer with an Internet connection. Sessions are posted on a secure website each week for six weeks. There are no set times for workshop sessions; participants login remotely at their convenience to complete exercises, read posted material, and interact with others.  The workshops can be particularly useful for individuals without access to transportation or who prefer the anonymity of a virtual group.

In addition to the on-line version, in-person community-based workshops are provided locally throughout the country.  In New Jersey, the community program is known as Take Control of Your Health and is currently available in all 21 counties.  Individuals looking for community workshops can find a list of local contacts on-line at, or by calling 1-800-792-8820.

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