Self-management is a key component of pulmonary rehabilitation. Self-management programs aim to help patients take charge of their pulmonary health by making changes to their lifestyle and by managing their chronic pulmonary disease in an optimal fashion. Although the term "self" implies "alone", the self-management component always includes a partnership with a health care professional.
For a self-management program to work well, it must simultaneously include an educational/behaviour change dimension and functional links with the health care system.
Please take a look at this scientific reference document regarding the effectiveness of self-management: Promoting effective self-management programs to improve COPD
(Source: Diane Nault; COPD Management according to the Chronic Care Model: the Quebec experience.)
The "education" component is vital to enable the patient to acquire the knowledge and develop the self-management skills so as to better take charge of their disease. However, such learning must not be limited to just acquiring knowledge.
This education cannot happen without the participation of a skilled educator.
The Canadian Thoracic Society (CTS) recommends that a pulmonary rehabilitation program include an education program designed to develop the patient's self-management skills and that includes the following elements: