Comparison of Community Health Worker–Led Diabetes Medication Decision-Making Support for Low-Income Latino and African American Adults With Diabetes Using E-Health Tools Versus Print Materials Academic Article uri icon

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  • BACKGROUND: Health care centers serving low-income communities have scarce resources to support medication decision making among patients with poorly controlled diabetes. OBJECTIVE: To compare outcomes between community health worker use of a tailored, interactive, Web-based, tablet computer-delivered tool (iDecide) and use of print educational materials. DESIGN: Randomized, 2-group trial conducted from 2011 to 2013 ( NCT01427660). SETTING: Community health center in Detroit, Michigan, serving a Latino and African American low-income population. PARTICIPANTS: 188 adults with a hemoglobin A1c value greater than 7.5% (55%) or those who reported questions, concerns, or difficulty taking diabetes medications. INTERVENTION: Participants were randomly assigned to receive a 1- to 2-hour session with a community health worker who used iDecide or printed educational materials and 2 follow-up calls. MEASUREMENTS: Primary outcomes were changes in knowledge about antihyperglycemic medications, patient-reported medication decisional conflict, and satisfaction with antihyperglycemic medication information. Also examined were changes in diabetes distress, self-efficacy, medication adherence, and hemoglobin A1c values. RESULTS: Ninety-four percent of participants completed 3-month follow-up. Both groups improved across most measures. iDecide participants reported greater improvements in satisfaction with medication information (helpfulness, P = 0.007; clarity, P = 0.03) and in diabetes distress compared with the print materials group (P < 0.001). The other outcomes did not differ between the groups. LIMITATIONS: The study was conducted at 1 health center during a short period. The community health workers were experienced in behavioral counseling, thereby possibly mitigating the need for additional support tools. CONCLUSION: Most outcomes were similarly improved among participants receiving both types of decision-making support for diabetes medication. Longer-term evaluations are necessary to determine whether the greater improvements in satisfaction with medication information and diabetes distress achieved in the iDecide group at 3 months translate into better longer-term diabetes outcomes. PRIMARY FUNDING SOURCE: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.


  • Heisler, Michele
  • Choi, Hwajung
  • Palmisano, Gloria
  • Mase, Rebecca
  • Richardson, Caroline
  • Fagerlin, Angela
  • Montori, Victor
  • Spencer, Michael
  • An, Laurence C

publication date

  • November 18, 2014

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