Online Program

“It feels good to know that someone cares”: Latino patients' life experiences influence motivations for attending a diabetes health education class

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Annie Nguyen, PhD, MPH, Department of Family Medicine, Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California, Alhambra, CA
Enedina Sepulveda, University of California, Irvine, Orange, CA
Marco Angulo, MD, Family Medicine, UC, Irvine, Orange, CA
Background: Health education is an important component of diabetes management.  Free monthly, Spanish-language, education classes were offered at a community-based clinic in a medically underserved area.  The goal of this study was to explore patients’ motivations for attending class and how they interacted with their personal experiences with diabetes.  

Methods: 19 Latino patients from the class (63% female, mean age 54, 58% <HS education, 37% uninsured) participated in 7 focus groups conducted in Spanish.  Discussions were audiorecorded, transcribed, and translated.  Transcripts were content coded by two coders to create a thematic coding scheme.    

Results: Four main themes emerged as motivations for attendance: (1) desire to “do better” because of family experience with death/complications from diabetes; (2) access to free information, some stated they were unable to get information elsewhere or didn’t get enough information from personal doctor; (3) a way of feeling control: many struggled with blood glucose and dietary changes because of limited financial resources to purchase healthy foods and eating traditional meals focused on meats, tortillas, and bread; (4) peer social support: group setting offered informal emotional support (“injection of energy”, “gives life meaning”), informational support (sharing stories, recipes), a space to seek non-family support because some felt uncomfortable discussing diabetes with family or live with family who don’t support lifestyle changes.  

Conclusion:  Findings contribute “thick descriptions” of how real-life experiences contribute to the perceived value of a diabetes education class.  Gaining diabetes self-management knowledge only partly explains the perceived value of classes.  Practice implications will be discussed.

Learning Areas:

Chronic disease management and prevention
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs

Learning Objectives:
Describe diabetic patients’ motivations for attending a diabetes education class; Describe ways in which patients’ life experiences can influence motivations for attendance; Discuss the way in which understanding patients’ life contexts can lead to the development of more relevant content and effective strategies for class recruitment and retention.

Keyword(s): Diabetes, Chronic Disease Management and Care

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have presented and published on projects using qualitative and quantitative methodologies. I have been the PI of grants focusing on diabetes management behaviors among Latino patients as well as other issues relevant to older adults.
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.