Diabetes Education: The Role of CHWs and Variations in Outcomes

diabetes monitoring equipment

Coastal Bend Health Education Center logo

PATIENT-CENTERED CARE CLUSTER – PROJECT 14-05161.TAM

Diabetes Education: The Role of CHWs and Variations in Outcomes

Description

In 2012, the estimated total cost for diabetes treatment (including both direct and indirect costs) was $245 billion in the U.S. Further, the cost of diabetes related treatment has increased rapidly from $98 billion in 1997 to $174 billion in 2007 (American Diabetes Association, 1998, 2013). Considering the number of people diagnosed with diabetes is projected to reach 29 million in 2050, the total healthcare related costs for diabetes are expected to increase even further. Without proper treatment, lifestyle changes, and monitoring, diabetes complications can be severely disabling and even life-threatening. Research in the area of diabetes management and education (DME) interventions shows that some DME programs can improve patients’ self-management. This study will analyze the role of community health workers (CHWs) and types of technologies used by the CHWs in explaining variations in outcomes across DME sites in Texas. DME program participants’ data collected at the Texas A&M Health Science Center’s Coastal Bend Health Education Center (CBHEC) will be used for this study.

How is this different from related research?

The impact of various types of education programs and technologies used by CHWs has not been very well studied in the DME literature. The results from this study will help with the design of appropriate DME programs that engage CHWs for education and outreach. This project has potential for substantial cost savings when it comes to preventable hospital admissions and other costs of care for the U.S. healthcare system.

Value Proposition

  • Create a clear direction on design of most effective diabetes management & education programs and the role of community health workers
  • Recommend how much and what type of technologies to equip community health workers with
  • Identify variations in outcomes of diabetes management and education programs and the potential for cost of care savings related to diabetes population management
Coastal Bend Health Education Center logo