Associate Professor, Doctoral Program Director
Faith Hopp, MSW, Ph.D. is the Associate Professor, Director of the Social Work PhD program, and a Hartford Geriatric Social Work Faculty Scholar. Prior to her faculty appointment at Wayne State University, she was a Research Investigator with the Health Services Research and Development Center of Excellence at the VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System. She has served as principal investigator and co-investigator on federal and foundation grants focused on interventions and programs for people facing chronic diseases, including heart failure and diabetes, and end of life issues for these populations.
Degrees and Certifications
- Ph.D., Social Work and Sociology, University of Michigan
- M.S.W., Social Work, University of Michigan
- B.A., Oberlin College
- Social research
- Social welfare policy
Areas of Expertise
- Clinical trials
- Survey design
- Qualitative research
TARGET POPULATION EXPERTISE
- Older Adults
SUBSTANTIVE AREA EXPERTISE
- Intervention research and policies affecting people facing chronic disease and end of life issues
- Telehealth systems and chronic illness care
- Issues related to ethnic and racial diversity, Aging, and Health
CONTENT AREAS FOR MEDIA INTERVIEWS
- End of life care
- Chronic disease
Evaluation of the @HOMe Support Program. Blue Cross/Blue Shield Foundation
Dr. Hopp served as Co-Principal Investigator on a research project funded by the Blue Cross Blue Shield Foundation. This study, conducted in collaboration with colleagues from Hospice of Michigan, was designed to evaluate cost and service outcomes for the @HOMe Support program, a novel interdisciplinary home-based program for patients and caregivers facing advanced illness that draws on the Chronic Care Model. A cost analysis involved paired sample t-tests to examine pre/post differences in health care expenditures obtained from Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) claims data for program participants. Average 6-month costs per month significantly declined for patients older than 65 years of age from one of two Health Maintenance Organizations. Evaluation of the second HMO showed that patients less than 65 years of age with lower preentry costs (<70 000) had a nonsignificant decline in total costs. Study findings suggest @HOMe Support is associated with reductions in the use and cost for most health services over time.
Assessing Needs for an Ethnic Older Adult Day Care Program: A Feasibility Study
Dr. Hopp lead a research team to address the need for information about the perceptions of older adults, caregivers, and community leaders concerning their interest in the development of adult day care (ADC) programming .The ACCESS organization in Dearborn, Michigan provided funding for a qualitative research study involving focus groups and individual interviews among a multicultural group of seniors, caregivers, community leaders, and service providers in the multicultural community of Dearborn, Michigan. Focus groups (between two and eight participants) were conducted in English for older adults (two groups) caregivers (one group) and one group that included both older adults and caregivers. One of the older adults groups was conducted in Arabic. Eight interviews were conducted with religious leaders and administrators of aging services organizations. The resulting qualitative data was analyzed using an inductive thematic approach. Themes identified included those related to transportation, socialization, access to care among the multicultural community in metropolitan Detroit, the desire of seniors to feel productive and display cultural talents, and the need for adult day centers celebrating varied cultural practices and languages. Older adults in the Detroit area, many of whom are of Arab descent, face many challenges in accessing supportive health and long-term care services. They are excited about possibilities to support their community by developing an adult day center that celebrates diverse multicultural programming while providing needed social and medical support.
The implementation of the Affordable Care Act provides new opportunities for health care and social services providers to address these concerns by lending their considerable expertise to promote goals related to preventing disease, reducing health disparities, and cutting health care costs For these health and social care initiatives to be effective, they must be accessible to older adults living in a variety of community settings. One type of setting, referred to as Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities (NORC) are geographical areas not originally designed for older adults, but where a significant number of elders reside. Organized service provision for persons living in NORCS is an emerging strategy for addressing the needs of the many older adults who prefer to age in place. As a means of effectively developing their own programs and services to serve the needs of older adults living in NORCS, agencies such as the Detroit Area Agency on Aging (DAAA) has engaged Dr. Hopp as Co-Principal investigator for a study designed to research and disseminate comprehensive information on the characteristics and outcomes from existing NORC service programs.
This project addressed the following research questions:
1. What programs have been developed to address the needs of older adults living in NORCS, and what are the characteristics of these programs in terms of participant demographic characteristics, geographic location, and service provision?
2. What types of research designs have been utilized to evaluate the efficacy of NORC service provision, and what kinds of program outcomes have been observed, and what is the relevance of these studies for NORC service provision by DAAA?
3. What resources are available to inform the development of new service programs to address the needs of older adults living in NORCS? These resources may include program development guides, national organizations, and nationally known experts in the field.
For further details on other research, see Center for Social Work Research: http://research.socialwork.wayne.edu/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=143&Itemid=83
Office Location5447 Woodward Avenue, Rm 289
Grand Challenges Project
Supporting Long-distance Caregivers
Hopp is part of the Long Distance Family Caregiving consortium along with Cheryl Waites, professor of social work at Wayne State, Nancy J. Smyth, dean of the University at Buffalo School of Social Work, the State University of New York, and Perry Ohren and Marlene Schillinger of Jewish Family Service. The consortium gathers experts from organizations in Detroit and Buffalo to advance research, education, outreach and training to assist the growing population of long-distance family caregivers. The most important component of the consortium will be identifying and designing resources for family caregivers. Learn more
Innovative Care for Advanced Illness
Hopp is studying emerging, innovative and culturally relevant interventions for people with advanced illness. Specifically, Hopp is examining alternatives to the traditional health care paradigm that requires seriously ill patients to choose between aggressive, life-sustaining treatment and comfort-oriented hospice care. With funding from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation, Hopp has collaborated on studies of @HOMe Support,™ an innovative palliative care program that does not require hospice election, limited life expectancy, or limitations on the use of curative treatments. Hopp and her colleagues found that the program, which combined traditional hospice services with health care services, resulted in cost savings from decreased emergency room visits and hospitalizations and shorter hospital stays. They also identified the program components of most value to patients, including medical and emotional support, practical assistance, monitoring, and connection to social services.
Hopp is also addressing disparities in care for chronic illness among Detroit’s African American residents. Hopp is studying the benefits of embedding support services, resources, and training programs into African American churches. Specifically, Hopp is collaborating with the Southeast Michigan Association to Transform Advanced Illness Care to develop an evidence-based advanced illness navigator program within Detroit-area churches to help these faith communities identify and promote resources and support. Learn more