Utilizing a descriptive quantitative design to guide data collection and analysis, 11 of the 14 clinics in the State of Minnesota that participate in the SagePlus program were selected by the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) to participate in this study. The population for this study was the 22 healthcare professionals who were providing the lifestyle interventions in those clinics. The purpose of this study was to determine if the SagePlus healthcare professionals who are providing lifestyle counseling interventions were using Motivational Interviewing (MI) with SagePlus clients and if the healthcare professionals were maintaining the spirit of MI throughout these interactions. The Behavior Change Counseling Index (BECCI) tool was utilized to assess the healthcare professional's competency in using MI techniques. While all of the healthcare professionals providing demographic information for the study reported that they used MI when providing lifestyle counseling, only one healthcare professional spoke for less than half of the time, and only 50% of the participants had a score reflecting competency. This indicates that the healthcare professionals do not fully adhere to the principles of MI. "MI is more about listening than telling, about evoking rather than instilling, and empowering the client to make the change" (Rollnick, Miller, & Butler, 2007, p. 3). The information gained from this study can be used to improve the effectiveness of MI-based interventions to guide lifestyle behavior changes in the clients of the MDH's SagePlus program. In addition, study findings can be used to provide ongoing support, feedback, and continuing education necessary to promote effective Motivational Interviewing by the healthcare professionals who are providing SagePlus lifestyle counseling.


Diane E. Witt

Committee Member

Hans-Peter de Ruiter

Date of Degree




Document Type



Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)


School of Nursing


Allied Health and Nursing

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License


Rights Statement

In Copyright