Date of Conferral





Health Services


Heidi Waters


Diabetes education is a principal component of optimal diabetes care that is often underutilized despite the known benefits that include reductions in complications as well as improved glycemic control and self-management knowledge. The purpose of this quantitative study was to examine the association between the completion of diabetes education, referral source, and visit modality. Because the completion of diabetes education is multifaceted, Levesque’s theoretical framework of health access, which incorporates dimensions of the accessibility of services and the abilities of potential users in the utilization of health services, was used to ground the study. A retrospective chart review was conducted for adult patients with Type 2 diabetes within one health system in Pennsylvania. Logistic regression analyses were completed, and no statistically significant relationship was found between the completion of diabetes education, the specialty of the referring physician, and the modality of visit scheduled. When covariates were included in the logistic regression models, older individuals were found to be more likely to complete diabetes education; for every 1-year increase in age, individuals were 2.7% more likely to complete diabetes education. African Americans were found to be 69.5% less likely than White individuals to complete diabetes education. These results may be utilized as the foundation for future prospective studies to better understand the completion of diabetes education. The results of this study may also influence positive social change through more informed health service organization decision-making and public policy directives as well as better targeted interventions to improve diabetes education completion rates.