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Simplicity, flexibility, and respect: preferences related to patient education in hardly reached people with type 2 diabetes

Authors Torenholt R, Varming A, Engelund G, Vestergaard S, Møller BL, Pals RAS, Willaing I

Received 29 June 2015

Accepted for publication 9 September 2015

Published 5 November 2015 Volume 2015:9 Pages 1581—1586

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/PPA.S91408

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Safaa Khaled

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen


Rikke Torenholt,1 Annemarie Varming,1 Gitte Engelund,1 Susanne Vestergaard,2 Birgitte Lund Møller,3 Regitze Anne Saurbrey Pals,1 Ingrid Willaing1

1Health Promotion Research, Steno Diabetes Center A/S, Gentofte, 2Danish Diabetes Association, Copenhagen, 3Region of Southern Denmark, Vejle, Denmark


Abstract: Individuals with lower income and less education are two to four times more likely to develop diabetes than more advantaged individuals. In response to this, there is a need for developing health promotion activities targeting hardly reached populations. The aim of this study was to examine the perspectives of hardly reached people with type 2 diabetes on patient education, focusing on their wishes and needs regarding format and approach. Data were collected through qualitative interviews with nine individuals with type 2 diabetes with little or no education and characterized as hardly reached patients by health professionals. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analyzed according to systematic text condensation. We identified four main categories of preferences for patient education: 1) flexibility related to start time, duration, and intensity; 2) simple and concrete education tools, with regard to design and extent; 3) being together, related to meeting people in a similar situation; and 4) respectful educators, related to constructive patient–educator relationships. Insights into the preferences of hardly reached people with diabetes can contribute to the development of appropriately tailored patient education for this patient group.

Keywords: patient education, type 2 diabetes, hardly reached people, preferences

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