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A Theory-Based Self-Management Training Program for Older Adult Peer Leaders with Diabetes: A Feasibility Assessment

Authors Chen WC, Lin CC, Kuo CC, Wu CC, Liu TJ, Chen MT

Received 13 October 2020

Accepted for publication 23 November 2020

Published 7 January 2021 Volume 2021:14 Pages 33—44


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser

Wen-Chun Chen,1– 3 Chiu-Chu Lin,2,4,5 Chia-Chi Kuo,6,7 Chia-Chen Wu,8 Tz-Jie Liu,9 Mei-Tsu Chen9

1Department of Community Medicine, St. Martin De Porres Hospital, Chiayi, Taiwan; 2School of Nursing, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan; 3Department of Nursing, Chang Jung University of Science and Technology, Chiayi Campus, Tainan, Taiwan; 4Department of Renal Care, College of Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan; 5Department of Medical Research, Kaohsiung Medical University Hospital, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan; 6Emergency Department, Chi-Mei Medical Center, Tainan, Taiwan; 7Department of Nursing, Chang Jung Christian University, Tainan, Taiwan; 8School of Nursing, Fooyin University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan; 9Health Management Center, St. Martin De Porres Hospital, Chiayi, Taiwan

Correspondence: Chiu-Chu Lin Email

Objective: To improve the quality of peer leader training, this study developed a theory-based self-management training program for older adult peer leaders with diabetes and assessed its feasibility.
Background: Current self-management programs are designed mainly to be implemented by healthcare professionals, but healthcare staff may not fully perceive the needs and obstacles of older adults in disease management due to a lack of similar illness experience. To target this problem, peer leaders with successful self-management experiences, similar cultural backgrounds and languages, and related illness experiences are trained to guide and mentor peer patients in self-management programs.
Study Design and Methods: This study was conducted in two stages. In stage 1, a peer leader training program was developed based on experiential learning theory as the framework and self-regulation theory as the activity design strategy. In stage 2, program feasibility was assessed via participants’ feedback toward the training program by three indicators: attendance, future willingness to lead the peer-led self-management program, and leadership skills evaluated by a peer leader training assessment tool.
Results: In this study, peer leaders demonstrated good leadership skills by expressing active willingness to lead self-management programs in the community. Peer leaders’ feedback indicated that the program’s training content was helpful in preparing peer leaders to guide older adults in learning self-management skills and in improving the abilities and confidence of peer leaders in mentoring self-management.
Conclusion: Findings in this study showed that peer leader training can impact the effectiveness and success of self-management in older adults with diabetes. Even in a small-scale study, the impact was evident, which demonstrated the feasibility of the program. More large-scale studies on the effectiveness of various peer leader training programs in diverse disciplines are recommended.
Clinical Trials Registry: Identifier: NCT04298424 (the Peer-Led Self-Management Program).

Keywords: older adult, peer leader, diabetes, theory-based, peer-led, self-management

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