Diabetes Education Linked to Better Diabetes Self-Care
People with diabetes can participate in a diabetes education program called diabetes self-management education and support (DSMES). The program helps people with diabetes gain the knowledge, skills, and support needed for diabetes self-care.
What did this study examine?
This study examined three things:
- The percentage of US adults 18 and older with diabetes who reported receiving diabetes education.
- Whether people who received diabetes education—compared to people who did not—were more likely to follow 10 recommended self-care and clinical-care practices.
- Whether any social, economic, or race/ethnicity differences were found between people who received diabetes education and people who did not.
What were the results?
- Of adults with diabetes, only half (52%) reported receiving DSMES or other types of diabetes education.
- People who received diabetes education were more likely to follow self-care practices (not smoking, checking blood sugar daily, checking for foot sores daily, and getting regular physical activity).
- They were also more likely to follow clinical-care practices (getting a pneumonia shot, having an A1C test twice a year, and having an eye exam, flu shot, health care visit, and foot exam by a medical professional every year).
- Among people who received diabetes education, nearly 25% followed 9 or more of the 10 self-care and clinical-care practices, compared to 10% among people who never received diabetes education.
- Participation in diabetes education was lowest among Hispanic or Latino people and people who were uninsured, were living in a rural county, or had less than a high school education.
What’s important about this study?
This study shows that receiving diabetes education is an important part of diabetes care. It discusses the importance of:
- Raising awareness of the benefits of diabetes education.
- Making it easier for people to get DSMES to help increase participation.
- Creating diabetes education at the appropriate reading level and customized to a person’s culture and language.
- Using technology to deliver care at a distance, known as telemedicine. Telemedicine is an affordable way to deliver diabetes education and expand education across rural communities.