Purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess whether the VA-MEDIC (Veterans Affairs Multi-disciplinary Education and Diabetes Intervention for Cardiac risk reduction), a pharmacist-led group medical visit program, could improve achievement of target goals in hypertension, hyperglycemia, hyperlipidemia, and tobacco use in patients with type 2 diabetes compared to usual care.
Methods: This was a randomized controlled trial of VA-MEDIC intervention in addition to usual care versus usual care alone in diabetic patients to reduce cardiac risk factors. VA-MEDIC consisted of a 40- to 60-minute educational component by nurse, nutritionist, physical therapist, or pharmacist followed by pharmacist-led behavioral and pharmacological interventions over 4 weekly sessions. Measures The attainment of target goals in hemoglobin A1C (A1C), blood pressure, fasting lipids, and tobacco use recommended by the American Diabetes Association.
Results: Of 118 participants, 109 completed the study. VA-MEDIC (n = 58) participants were younger and had greater tobacco use at baseline than usual care but were similar in other cardiovascular risk factors. After 4 months, a greater proportion of VA-MEDIC participants versus controls achieved an A1C of less than 7% and a systolic blood pressure less than 130 mm Hg. No significant change was found in lipid control or tobacco use between the 2 study arms.
Conclusion: Pharmacist-led group medical visits are feasible and efficacious for improving cardiac risk factors.
Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00357955.