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Patient Educ Couns. 2004 Jun;53(3):333-46.

Educational and psychosocial programmes for adolescents with diabetes: approaches, outcomes and cost-effectiveness.

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Department of Economics, University of Surrey, Guildford GU2 7XH, UK.


Diabetes incurs heavy personal and health system costs. Self-management is required if complications are to be avoided. Adolescents face particular challenges as they learn to take responsibility for their diabetes. A systematic review of educational and psychosocial programmes for adolescents with diabetes was undertaken. This aimed to: identify and categorise the types of programmes that have been evaluated; assess the cost-effectiveness of interventions; identify areas where further research is required. Sixty-two papers were identified and subjected to a narrative review. Generic programmes focus on knowledge/skills, psychosocial issues, and behaviour/self-management. They result in modest improvements across a range of outcomes but improvements are often not sustained, suggesting a need for continuous support, possibly integrated into normal care. In-hospital education at diagnosis confers few advantages over home treatment. The greatest returns may be obtained by targeting poorly controlled individuals. Few studies addressed resourcing issues and robust cost-effectiveness appraisals are required to identify interventions that generate the greatest returns on expenditure.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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