Self-Management Program, TC LHIN region

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Self-Management Program, TC LHIN region : Online School of Chronic Disease Self-Management

Toronto, CanadaToronto, Canada
Year Founded:
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
$500,000 - $1 million
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Healthy living begins with information. We will build an online evidenced-based video curriculum for chronic disease self-management targetting health education of Canadians 35 & older. The videos will be brief and accessible on Dr. Mike Evan’s YouTube channel & an e-learning module will be created.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

What if 2.5 to 3.0 minute long YouTube videos could be the 'booster-shots' for people who have received health education on managing their chronic conditions as well as promote wellness for Canadians over the age of 35? What if the videos were interactive
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

As of 2011, TC SMP has provided free evidence-based health education workshops to approximately 700 marginalized individuals living in the TC LHIN region suffering from chronic conditions such as asthma, arthritis, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, etc. In our growth, we have reached a limit and need to find a scaleable and accessible alternative that can substitute for the content of our time-intensive health education workshops.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Brief, open, accessible, and interactive YouTube videos will be the scaleable solution. Our program will provide content expertise stemming from experience of having delivered health education to marginalized population in the TC LHIN region. Evans Health Lab will bring their expertise of building health education videos, which have gone ‘viral’ on YouTube. Pivot Design Group will lend their expertise in developing engaging user-interface for an e-learning module and marketing. Our collaboration will span 14 months to develop an online curriculum on the following topics: healthy eating; medication management; sleep; smoking cessation; working with health care provider; positive thinking; goal setting; pain & fatigue management.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Evan’s Health lab’s 23 and 1/2 hours ( is the inspiration for our proposal. With this video in mind, imagine you are living with a chronic condition and your use of health care services is 'average'. I.e., in 365 days, on average, you are spending up to two days using health care services that can range from seeing doctors to specialists. The rest of the year, you are taking care of your own health. If you lived in TC LHIN region, you can attend our workshop to learn to self-manage. Perhaps you do not have time or inclination to do so. Now, imagine you can access YouTube videos and an e-learning module that provides similar health education message. The partners want to give people this option with your help.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

Since the 23 and ½ hour video was uploaded on YouTube in December 2011, the video has been seen by at least 3, 963, 389 individuals. As a corollary, we are confident that in launching this innovative video and e-learning module, as a Play Exchange winner will help us reach a large portion of our target audience. Moreover, we will use the quantitative data available in a YouTube channel as well as Google Analytics for the e-learning module to modify our marketing strategy. As the lead for this project, TC SMP will also obtain qualitative data. We will do this using a staggered approach. The first step will involve inviting previous workshop participants to come for an in-person viewing sessions of the videos. Subsequently, we will invite a smaller subset of this group to participate in a focus group that will help us learn of their feedback.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

As per Statistics Canada, in 2012, 83% of Canadians had access to the Internet at home. In recognizing this fact, in 5 years, we want to reach a 'viral' stage such that at least 50% of Canadians over 35 have learned of simple preventive activities; Public Health Agency of Canada notes that elimination of tobacco use, unhealthy diets, physical inactivity, and harmful alcohol use can reduce risk of 40% of cancers and 80% of risk of heart disease, diabetes, and respiratory diseases. We are confident that our curriculum will also transform delivery of scaleable & accessible health education.

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

A YouTube based platform and a web-based e-learning module are cost-efficient. Also, a well-designed marketing strategy will position us to engage and re-engage viewers through channels such as social media, infographics, and print or web materials. Also, for the duration that TC SMP remains funded by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term, we will establish an annual plan to review the accuracy and validity of the content.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

A sector-based search of ideas on June 15th in the Play Exchange marketplace was an inspiring and humbling exercise. It also was reassuring to learn that our idea, as proposed, is unique for our target audience of individuals over the age of 35. According to Statistics Canada, approximately 56.2% of all Canadians are over the ages of 35. The potential to support their chronic disease self-management is huge and we want to build these tools with your support.

Founding Story

TC SMP services have been actively implemented in areas of high chronic conditions in the TC LHIN region where majority of our clients are marginalized populations, which includes new immigrants, seniors, under and unemployed, as well as members of visible minorities. We have now reached a growth stage where we cannot support the communities with more workshops. In looking for solutions our program coordinator Surkhab Peerzada met with Dr. Mike Evans and the idea of a video-based online school of chronic disease management emerged. Pivot Design joined the partnership to help us design an interactive user-interface. The three partners bring together expertise in: content, production, marketing as well as development of a user-interface.


Presently, the TC SMP team is comprised of 3.25 full-time staff, which includes: Director (1), Coordinator (1), Program Assistant (1.25). If we are successful in this competition, then two members from Evans Health Lab and two members from the Pivot Design will formally join the project.