Accelerating Best Practices in Peer Support Around the World

Outcomes of a Church-based Diabetes Prevention Program Delivered by Peers

Diabetes Educ. 2014 Jan 30. [Pubmed Abstract]

Outcomes of a Church-based Diabetes Prevention Program Delivered by Peers: A Feasibility Study
Tang TS, Nwankwo R, Whiten Y, Oney C

This purpose of this study was to investigate the feasibility and potential health impact of a church-based diabetes prevention program delivered by peers.

Thirteen at-risk African American adults were recruited to a peer-led diabetes prevention program adapted from the National Diabetes Education Program’s Power to Prevent curriculum. The program consisted of 6 core education sessions followed by 6 biweekly telephone support calls. Components of feasibility examined included recruitment, attendance, and retention. Baseline, 8-week, and 20-week assessments measured clinical outcomes (percentage body weight change, waist circumference, lipid panel, blood pressure) and lifestyle behaviors (eg, physical activity and diet).

Of the 13 participants enrolled at baseline, 11 completed the intervention. Mean attendance across 6 core sessions was 5.2 classes (87%). At 8 weeks, significant improvements were found for physical activity (P = .031), waist circumference (P = .049), serum cholesterol (P = .036), systolic blood pressure (P = .013), and fat intake (P = .006). At 20 weeks, not only did participants sustain the improvements made following the core intervention, but they also demonstrated additional improvements for HDL (P = .002) and diastolic blood pressure (P = .004).

Findings suggest that it is feasible to conduct a peer-led diabetes prevention program in a church-based setting that has a potentially positive impact on health-related outcomes.

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