Background: Although enthusiasm is growing for diabetic education programs for older people, data regarding their effectiveness and their long-term impact on self-management were neglected.
Purpose: To systematically review diabetes mellitus education that has long-term effects on the self-management of older diabetic people.
Data sources: The authors searched multiple sources dated through September 2012, including the Cochrane Library, MEDLINE, PsycINFO, Nursing and Allied Health databases, and the bibliographies of 50 previous reviews.
Methods and data extraction: Electronic databases were searched for controlled studies in English, published from 1987 to 2012, assessing the effects of long-term education for older people. Reviewers extracted study data using a structured abstraction form. Aggregated information about the effects of long-term education programs on older people with diabetes was used for making adjustments in the review.
Results: The pooled estimate of the long-term effects of education was a 0.5 percentage point reduction (95% confidence interval), modest but significant improvement. The evidence also supports that long-term education is beneficial for improving diabetic patient self-care management in terms of glycemic control.