“Rural Intervention for Caregivers' Heart Health”
The investigators are testing a two-group, randomized, controlled trial with 280 primary caregivers of adult patients with a chronic illness to test the efficacy of the Rural Intervention for Caregivers' Heart Health (RICHH). Immediate (4-month) and long-term (12-month) effects of the RICHH intervention on CVD risk factors, self-management behaviors, and depressive symptoms will be compared to usual care. The investigators also will test the moderating effect of gender on intervention outcomes, given the many differences between male and female caregivers. Specific Aim 1: To determine effects of the RICHH intervention on the primary outcomes of CVD risk factors (i.e., lipid profile, body mass index, and blood pressure) at 4 and 12 months. Hypotheses 1: The intervention group will have better lipid profile, body mass index, and blood pressure outcomes than the usual care group at 4 and 12 months. Specific Aim 2: To determine effects of the RICHH intervention on self-management behaviors (i.e., diet quality, physical activity level, and self-report adherence to specific CVD health behaviors). Hypotheses 2: The intervention group will have better diet quality, higher physical activity levels, and better adherence to specific CVD health behaviors than the usual care group at 4 and 12 months. Specific Aim 3: To determine effects of RICHH on depressive symptoms at 4 and 12 months. Hypotheses 3: Caregivers receiving the intervention will have lower levels of depressive symptoms than caregivers receiving usual care at 4 and 12 months. Specific Aim 4: To evaluate whether intervention effects on outcomes will differ by caregivers' gender. Hypotheses 4: Effects will be stronger for male compared to female caregivers at 4 and 12 months. Impact: The proposed study will have a substantial impact on caregivers' cardiovascular health and quality of life because it will provide needed CVD risk prevention, and health promotion to rural caregivers living in distressed environments where CVD risk reduction and self-management is difficult. The intervention holds the potential to produce major improvements in health among caregivers living in rural environments in the US.
Behavioral - RICHH Intervention
Whole health cardiovascular disease (CVD) self-care risk reduction intervention
Behavioral - Usual care
Referral to primary care provider
Rural Intervention for Caregivers' Heart Health (RICHH)