Research Activities March 2013, No. 391

Self-management programs for patients with diabetes have a positive impact

Chronic Disease

Primary care providers face numerous barriers to optimizing care for patients with diabetes. Automated telephone self-management (ATSM) accompanied by nurse care management is an example of a health information technology tool that can assist with self-management support in diabetes care. A second type of self-management support program to address this area is characterized by group medical visits (GMVs) with physician and health educator facilitation. When researchers compared each of these programs to the usual care (UC) provided by patients’ primary care clinics, they found that primary care providers classified more patients exposed to ATSM (58.7 percent) and GMV (52.6 percent) as likely to engage in health-related goal setting than UC patients (33.3 percent).

The researchers surveyed 87 primary care providers caring for 245 patients with diabetes enrolled in one of these three programs. The providers rated the quality of care as poor or bad for 37.2 percent of their UC patients, 26.9 percent of GMV patients, and 14.3 percent of ATSM patients. Providers also reported that patients exposed to ATSM were helped more with respect to the barrier of limited English proficiency than were those patients exposed to GMVs (82 percent vs. 44 percent). This study was supported by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (HS14864).

See "Primary care provider perceptions of the effectiveness of two self-management support programs for vulnerable patients with diabetes," by Neda Ratanawongsa, M.D., Vijay K. Bhandari, M.D., Margaret Handley, Ph.D., and others in the January 2012 Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology 6(1), pp. 116-124.


Page last reviewed March 2013
Page originally created March 2013
Internet Citation: Self-management programs for patients with diabetes have a positive impact. Content last reviewed March 2013. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.