An outpatient-focused program for childhood diabetes: design, implementation, and effectiveness

Tex Med. 1992 Jul;88(7):64-8.


Treatment of childhood diabetes mellitus has undergone many recent changes, one of which is an increasing focus on outpatient management. In mid-1988, the pediatric diabetes clinic at Texas Children's Hospital began adopting an outpatient-focused treatment program using a care team. This report reviews our experience during this transition. Between 1987 and 1990, the percentage of new-onset patients who were never admitted to the hospital increased from 0 to 38%. Length of stay for new-onset patients who are admitted has declined. The shift in program focus has also led to decreased diabetes-related readmissions and length of stay per readmission. Estimated total patient cost savings exceed $100,000 per year for new-onset patients alone. Our results regarding patient care and cost-effectiveness agree with reports from other such diabetes treatment programs and support greater acceptance and use of this outpatient-focused approach.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Ambulatory Care / economics*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cost Control / trends
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / economics
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / therapy*
  • Female
  • Hospitalization / economics*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Length of Stay / economics
  • Male
  • Patient Education as Topic / economics
  • Texas