Sustained effects of a nurse coaching intervention via telehealth to improve health behavior change in diabetes

Heather Young, Sheridan Miyamoto, Deborah Ward, Madan Dharmar, Yajarayma Tang-Feldman, Lars Berglund

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations


Background: Diabetes educators and self-management programs are scarce in rural communities, where diabetes is the third highest-ranking health concern. The goal of this study was to evaluate the benefits of nurse telehealth coaching for persons with diabetes living in rural communities through a person-centered approach using motivational interviewing (MI) techniques. Materials and Methods: A randomized experimental study design was used to assign participants to receive either nurse telehealth coaching for five sessions (intervention group) or usual care (control group). Outcomes were measured in both groups using the Diabetes Empowerment Scale (DES), SF-12, and satisfaction surveys. Mean scores for each outcome were compared at baseline and at the 9-month follow-up for both groups using a Student's t test. We also evaluated the change from baseline by estimating the difference in differences (pre-and postintervention) using regression methods. Results: Among the 101 participants included in the analysis, 51 received nurse telehealth coaching, and 50 received usual care. We found significantly higher self-efficacy scores in the intervention group compared with the control group based on the DES at 9 months (4.03 versus 3.64, respectively; p<0.05) and the difference in difference estimation (0.42; p<0.05). Conclusions: The nurse MI/telehealth coaching model used in this study shows promise as an effective intervention for diabetes self-management in rural communities. The sustained effect on outcomes observed in the intervention group suggests that this model could be a feasible intervention for long-term behavioral change among persons living with chronic disease in rural communities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)828-834
Number of pages7
JournalTelemedicine and e-Health
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management


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