242926 Effects of Diabetes Understanding on Health and Lifestyle Changes in Individuals after Attending a Diabetes Education Seminar

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Jody Riskowski, PhD , Institute for Aging Research, Hebrew SeniorLife, 1200 Centre St., Boston, MA 02131, Department of Kinesiology, University of Texas at El Paso, El Paso, TX
Chantal Vella, PhD , Department of Movement Sciences, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID
Karen Macias, BS , Kinesiology Department, University of Texas at El Paso, El Paso, TX
BACKGROUND: Almost 100 million people worldwide have diabetic complications. A key to reducing diabetic complications and enhancing quality of life post-diabetes diagnosis may include educational opportunities that present accurate information in a meaningful and usable manner. Therefore, our purpose was to evaluate diabetes knowledge on health and lifestyle changes after attending a diabetes education seminar. METHODS: Thirty-eight participants of a diabetes seminar were interviewed over the telephone after attending a 6-hour diabetes education seminar. Average follow-up period was 18 months. The follow-up survey was similar to the pre-seminar survey of self-reported health status, physical activity, diet and general diabetes knowledge. From the participant's general diabetes knowledge at follow-up, they were assigned to one of three groups: High Understanding (HU; 10/10 on knowledge assessment; n=9), Medium Understanding (MU; 8-9/10 on knowledge assessment; n=17), and Low Understanding (LU; ≤7/10 on knowledge assessment; n=12). Kruskal-Wallis test assessed group differences. RESULTS: There were no significant group differences at baseline in age, body mass index (BMI), educational attainment, medical insurance, diet, physical activity, and diabetes knowledge (p=0.083-0.882). At follow-up, HU participants had significantly greater decreases in BMI than MU (p=0.044) and LU participants (p=0.023). HU participants were more likely to pre-plan meals (p=0.038) and be physically active (p=0.034) than MU and LU participants. CONCLUSION: Diabetes education seminar participants with a high level of diabetes understanding were more likely to self-report lifestyle changes associated with decreased risk of diabetic complications. These results suggest that there is an important relationship between patient understanding of diabetes and lifestyle.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Chronic disease management and prevention
Public health or related education

Learning Objectives:
1. To discuss the effects of a continuing education seminar for adults diagnosed with diabetes 2. To analyze how diabetes knowledge may affect lifestyle choices in individuals with diabetes

Keywords: Diabetes, Health Education

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I led the diabetes seminar assessment and have a background in evaluating learning gains of community-based programs. I also serve as an assistant professor at the University of Texas at El Paso and am a research fellow at the Institute for Aging Research.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.