HumanInsight Participation rate of diabetes patients in structured education programs and reasons for non-participation: a cross-sectional survey among patients with diabetes mellitus in Thuringia
Z Evid Fortbild Qual Gesundhwes. 2022 Jun 14:S1865-9217(22)00054-X. doi: 10.1016/j.zefq.2022.04.004. Online ahead of print.
BACKGROUND AND AIM: Structured education programs for patients with diabetes mellitus are an important and effective component of therapy. The aim of this survey is to assess the rate of participation in education programs in selected practices in Thuringia. Furthermore, we intend to identify factors that influence participation in order to derive strategies to increase participation.
METHODS: Survey of patients with diabetes in Thuringian general practices and a diabetology practice using a newly developed questionnaire regarding "patient characteristics", "diabetes characteristics", "DMP and education programs" as well as reasons for non-participation in education programs and the wishes of non-educated patients. Data were analyzed using binary logistic regression analysis and other descriptive statistics in SPSS (IBM).
RESULTS: Of the 1,254 questionnaires sent out, 637 (51%) were returned. Participation rate in education programs was 68% (n=405). HbA1c > 7.5%, diabetes sequelae, DMP participation and the awareness of education programs were significantly associated with participation in education programs. Recommendation/invitation to education programs, complex treatment regimes, long diabetes duration and urban practice led to a significant increase in the odds of attending an education program. Non-educated patients subjectively mentioned lack of need for training, lack of information, logistical reasons, and lack of time as reasons for non-participation. They expressed the wish for more information and recommendations from their general practitioner, shorter duration of education programs and online offerings.
DISCUSSION: The participation rate in education programs was in the range of the evaluation reports on DMP programs for diabetes. Lower participation rates in rural areas may be explained by the lower physician density and especially education program offers as well as the more difficult accessibility. The factors and reasons for non-participation underline the need for comprehensive care and the general practitioner's key role in motivating, coordinating and educating patients.
CONCLUSION: General practitioners play a central role in the care of patients with diabetes, and there is a need for comprehensive care and education programs. Telemedicine and digital applications can complement DMP and education programs.
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