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BMJ Open Diabetes Res Care. 2018 Apr 21;6(1):e000515. doi: 10.1136/bmjdrc-2018-000515. eCollection 2018.

Intent-to-treat analysis of a simultaneous multisite telehealth diabetes prevention program.

Author information

1
Center for Clinical Translational Research, Billings Clinic, Billings, Montana, USA.
2
AMGA (formerly American Medical Group Association), Alexandria, Virginia, USA.
3
Department of Public Health Education, University of North Carolina-Greensboro, Greensboro, North Carolina, USA.
#
Contributed equally

Abstract

Objective:

Determine the effectiveness of a 16-week modified diabetes prevention program (DPP) administered simultaneously to multiple rural communities from a single urban site, as compared with a similar face-to-face intervention. A 12-week intervention was evaluated to consider minimization of staff costs in communities where resources are limited.

Research design and methods:

A prospective cohort study compared DPP interventions implemented in rural (via telehealth technology) and urban (face-to-face) communities using an intent-to-treat analysis. Primary outcome measures included 5% and 7% body weight loss. Logistic regression analyses were used to determine predictors of intervention success and included a variable for treatment effect.

Results:

Between 2010 and 2015, up to 667 participants were enrolled in the study representing one urban and 15 rural communities across Montana. The 16-week urban and rural interventions were comparable; 33.5% and 34.6% of participants lost 7% body weight, respectively; 50% and 47% lost 5% (p=0.22). Participants who were male (OR=2.41; 95% CI 1.32 to 4.40), had lower baseline body mass index (OR=1.03; 95% CI 1.01 to 1.07), attended more sessions (OR=1.33; 95% CI 1.11 to 1.58), and more frequently reported (OR=3.84; 95% CI 1.05 to 14.13) and met daily fat gram (OR=4.26; 95% CI 1.7 to 10.6) and weekly activity goals (OR=2.46; 95% CI 1.06 to 5.71) were more likely to meet their 7% weight loss goal. Predictors of meeting weight loss goals were similar for participants enrolled in the 12-week intervention.

Conclusions:

Using telehealth technology to administer a modified DPP to multiple rural communities simultaneously demonstrated weight loss results comparable to those in a face-to-face intervention. Given the limitation of resources, linking rural areas to urban centers using telemedicine may increase access to much needed services to prevent or delay progression to diabetes.

KEYWORDS:

prevention; rural health; telemedicine; type 2 diabetes

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