Perceptions of Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support, Diabetes Self-Management Behavior, and Self- Reported Health in Persons Diagnosed with Type II Diabetes

Monday, 9 November 2015

Tracy M. Towne, PhD, MSN, BSN, RN
Henry Predolin School of Nursing, Edgewood College, Madison, WI, USA

Diabetes has a physical and mental burden to those with the illness. Economically there is a significant impact to the United States' health care system. Education and support is the best way for health care providers (HCPs) to improve the health and well-being of those with type II diabetes. The purpose of this study was to explore the relationships among perceptions of the education/support provided by HCPs related to self-management behaviors and the overall health status in community dwelling adults with type II diabetes.

A cross-sectional, correlational design was used and the setting was initially in two Midwestern states, followed by online data collection. The sample was non-random, convenience (N=66). Participants in the study were community dwelling, 25 years or older, able to read/speak English, had a self-reported diagnosis of type II diabetes for three or more years, and were able to access a telephone or a computer with internet capabilities. Individuals were excluded if they were unable to recall ever receiving diabetes self-management education/support.

Nine quantitative instruments were used to collect data, along with researcher developed open-ended questions. Over the course of seven months data were collected by mail survey (four months) and then by online format (3 months). Quantitative data were analyzed with parametric statistics including multiple linear regression and text data were summarized. Text data summarized four main issues related to the perception of education/support: education as helpful, frustration with education/support, emotional aspect of diabetes, and need to be self-taught. Participants' perceptions of diabetes-related content received moderated the relationship between environmental barriers to self-management and performance of self-management behaviors. Persons with high barriers and perceptions of low content received reported lower performance of self-management behaviors. Higher perceived diabetes content needed was a significant predictor of poorer physical and mental health. Greater self-efficacy was associated with greater performance of self-management behaviors.

This study provides information about how persons' perceptions of diabetes education/support, especially how content needed and received impact self-management behaviors and health status of persons with type II diabetes. Additional research is recommended with a larger, more diverse sample using mixed methods to further the understanding of this phenomenon.