Impact of a community-based approach to patient engagement in rural, low-income adults with type 2 diabetes

Lynn E. Glenn, Michelle Nichols, Maithe Enriquez, Carolyn Jenkins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Objective: This secondary analysis examined the relationships between Patient Activation Measure (PAM) scores, use of health services, and HgA1C. Design: A feasibility study was conducted for a community-based intervention for high-risk adults with uncontrolled diabetes. Data were collected at baseline and monthly, including PAM and modified Diabetes Self-Management Assessment Report Tool. Intervention: Participants (n = 58) were randomized to a 3-month nurse (RN) telephone management or community health worker (CHW) in-home intervention, focusing on medication adherence, timely follow-up, diabetes self-management coaching, and linkage to resources. Results: Sample was mostly female (73%), African-American (90%), low income (75%), high school education or less (80%), and mean age of 59 years. A positive association between PAM score and self-reported diabetes care recommendations was found (r =.356, p =.014) and significant correlation between baseline PAM score and HgA1C levels (r = −.306, p =.029). A paired samples t test showed statistically significant increases in PAM scores in the CHW intervention group (mean increase +8.5, CI [+2.49 to +14.65]); baseline (M = 60.31, SD = 13.3) to end of study ([M = 68.89, SD = 16.39], t(22) = 2.924, p =.008 [two-tailed]). Conclusion: A community-based approach to diabetes management demonstrated a positive effect on patient activation. Although disparities in health care access among rural, low-income populations exist, community-based interventions show potential for improving patient engagement in diabetes management and recommended health services.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)178-187
Number of pages10
JournalPublic Health Nursing
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • community health worker
  • diabetes mellitus type 2
  • health promotion
  • patient activation
  • patient activation measure
  • patient engagement
  • poverty
  • rural population
  • self-management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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