Preferences and opinions of patients with Type 2 diabetes on education and self-care: a cross-sectional survey

Diabet Med. 2010 Jan;27(1):85-91. doi: 10.1111/j.1464-5491.2009.02886.x.


Objective: To assess the preferences of patients with Type 2 diabetes regarding self-care activities and diabetes education.

Research design and methods: Questionnaire survey carried out in general practices and outpatient clinics across the Netherlands.

Outcomes: preferred setting for education, preferred educator, and preferred and most burdensome self-care activity. Multinomial logistic regression analysis assessed associations between outcomes and patient characteristics, preferences and opinions.

Results: Data of 994 consecutive individuals were analysed (mean 65 years; 54% male; 97% Caucasian; 21% low education level; 80% primary care). Of these, 19% thought they had poor to average glycaemic control, 61% thought they were over-weight and 32% thought they took too little exercise. Eighty per cent of respondents preferred diabetes education during regular diabetes check-ups. Patients taking insulin preferred education to be given by nurses [odds ratio (OR) 2.45; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.21-4.96]. Individuals who thought their health to be poor/average preferred education to be given by doctors (OR 1.65; 95% CI 1.08-2.53). Physical exercise was the preferred self-care activity of those who thought they took too little exercise (OR 1.97; 95% CI 1.32-2.93) but was preferred less by patients with mobility problems (OR 0.65; 95% CI 0.43-0.97). Patients with eating disinhibition reported keeping to a healthy diet (OR 4.63; 3.00-7.16) and taking medication (OR 1.66; 95% CI 1.09-2.52) as the most burdensome self-care activities. Age was not an independent determinant of any preference.

Conclusions: When providing education for patients with newly diagnosed Type 2 diabetes, healthcare providers should consider making a tailored education plan, irrespective of the patient's age.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / drug therapy
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / epidemiology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / psychology*
  • Exercise / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Netherlands / epidemiology
  • Odds Ratio
  • Self Care / psychology*
  • Self Care / statistics & numerical data
  • Surveys and Questionnaires