Patient Engagement in Type 2 Diabetes: A Collaborative Community Health Initiative

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PurposeThe purpose of this study was to describe the effects of an innovative rural community-based, diabetes self-management education and support (DSMES) program on patient behaviors and outcomes.MethodsA 12-month pre-post study design with physiological data collection at program initiation, 16 weeks, and 6 and 12 months postenrollment was used for program assessment. The program consisted of an American Diabetes Association–accredited curriculum provided by the hospital and interfaced with a YMCA curriculum promoting lifestyle change. The 28-session program was delivered over a 1-year period.ResultsThe sample size was 115. Participants were primarily white and female, with a mean age of 57 years. Mean body mass index (BMI) at program initiation was 37; mean A1C was 8.5 (69.4 mmol/mol). Significant reductions were obtained in weight, BMI (at 16 weeks), and A1C (at 6 months); these reductions were sustained at 12 months. Medication intake was significantly reduced, and diabetes-related emergency department visits were below national averages.ConclusionsResults support the positive impact of a year-long, community-based, healthy behavior, DSMES program on health outcomes and overall costs of care delivery in the rural setting.

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