Interactive media for diabetes self-management: issues in maximizing public health impact

Med Decis Making. Nov-Dec 2010;30(6):745-58. doi: 10.1177/0272989X10385845.


Background: Diabetes self-management presents a series of challenging tasks, and primary care, where the majority of cases of adult diabetes are treated, is hard-pressed to address these issues given competing demands. This article discusses how interactive media (IM) can be used to support diabetes self-management.

Methods: Following a brief review of the literature, the 5 As framework for enhancing the effectiveness of health behavior counseling and the RE-AIM model for estimating and enhancing public health impact are used to frame discussion of the strengths and limitations of IM for diabetes shared decision making and self-management support.

Results: Data and lessons learned from a series of randomized trials of IM for diabetes self-management education are summarized around 2 key issues. The first is enhancing patient engagement in decision making and includes enhancing user experience and engagement, improving quality of care, and promoting collaborative action planning and follow-up. The second is getting such resources into place and sustaining them in real-world primary care settings and involves enhancing participation at patient, clinician, and health care system levels and enhancing the generalizability of results.

Conclusions: . Key opportunities for IM to support diabetes self-management include assessment of information for shared decision making, assistance with problem-solving self-management challenges, and provision of follow-up support. A key current challenge is the linkage of IM supports to the rest of the patient's care, and collection of cost-effectiveness data is a key need for future research.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cooperative Behavior
  • Decision Making
  • Decision Support Techniques*
  • Diabetes Mellitus / drug therapy
  • Diabetes Mellitus / prevention & control*
  • Health Behavior
  • Health Education
  • Humans
  • Patient Education as Topic / methods*
  • Patient-Centered Care
  • Peer Group
  • Public Health / methods*
  • Self Care / methods*