An Evaluation of Communication Methods for Community Outreach in Patients with Diabetes

Authors

  • Elysia Tjong A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Aaron Salazar A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Jesse Chang A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Shafqat Saif A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Melanie De Shadarevian A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Claire Scheffer A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Brittany Morello A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Parambir Bhatti A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Andy Barringer A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Arsineh Artounian Savarani A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Jesus Naranjo A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Salil Kalam A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Chris Dioxon, DO A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Ray Wagner A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Kate Whelihan A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona
  • Joy H. Lewis A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.47611/jsr.vi.721

Keywords:

Diabetes, Communication Methods,

Abstract

Research Objectives

To prevent health complications, patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus should be regularly seen by their medical provider and routinely checked for hemoglobin A1c levels. However, many patients do not return for routine visits. The objective was to evaluate the efficacy of two communication modalities in scheduling patient appointments.

Study Design/Methods

Patients with a hemoglobin A1c > 9.0 not seen in clinic in >6 months were randomly assigned to a control or experimental group. All participants received an initial text message offering help with scheduling an appointment. The control group was contacted via a second text message and the experimental group was contacted via phone call. Additionally, the experimental group was asked to identify perceived healthcare barriers. In addition to the reported barriers, data included patients who scheduled and kept appointments in each group when data was available. Chi-squared test (p-value of <0.001) was performed.

 

Principal Findings and Quantitative Results

 

The total number of patients with an HbA1c greater than 9.0% was 416. A total of 156 were contacted with 34 (21.8%) participating. Twenty-five (16.0%) were lost to follow-up. Sixteen patients (47.1%) responded to voice and 18 (52.9%) to text. A chi-squared test with a value of 49.67 (p-value of <0.001) determined our findings significant. Ten (6.4%) were scheduled for follow-up. A larger proportion of patients received an appointment via voice (6 of 16, 37.5%) than text (4 of 18, 22.2%) with a chi-squared value of 118.56 (p-value of <0.0001).

 

Conclusions/Impact on Health Centers

The study demonstrated that combined use of text messaging and phone calls could lead to higher rates of scheduled appointments. Future studies could address whether appointments made with this method of contact are kept. One factor that limited scheduled appointments was that 16% of patients indicated they were no longer being seen at El Rio. This suggests the need for an additional feature to be placed in NextGen where staff can indicate that patients are no longer being followed. Results of our research will be presented at El Rio Research Fair in May 2019.

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Author Biographies

Elysia Tjong, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student

Aaron Salazar, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student

Jesse Chang, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student

Shafqat Saif, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student

Melanie De Shadarevian, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student

Claire Scheffer, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student

Brittany Morello, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student

Parambir Bhatti, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student 

Andy Barringer, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student

Arsineh Artounian Savarani, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student

Jesus Naranjo, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student

Salil Kalam, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Osteopathic Medical Student

Chris Dioxon, DO, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

D.O.

Ray Wagner, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

MD

Kate Whelihan, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

MPH, CPH

Joy H. Lewis, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

DO, PhD.

Published

2019-05-01

How to Cite

Tjong, E., Salazar, A., Chang, J., Saif, S., Shadarevian, M. D., Scheffer, C., Morello, B., Bhatti, P., Barringer, A., Savarani, A. A., Naranjo, J., Kalam, S., Dioxon, DO, C., Wagner, R., Whelihan, K., & Lewis, J. H. (2019). An Evaluation of Communication Methods for Community Outreach in Patients with Diabetes. Journal of Student Research. https://doi.org/10.47611/jsr.vi.721