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Mc Sharry, J,Dinneen, SF,Humphreys, M,O'Donnell, M,O'Hara, MC,Smith, SM,Winkley, K,Byrne, M
Diabetic Medicine
Barriers and facilitators to attendance at Type 2 diabetes structured education programmes: a qualitative study of educators and attendees
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Aims Attendance at structured diabetes education has been recommended internationally for all people with Type 2 diabetes. However, attendance rates are consistently low. This qualitative study aimed to explore experiences of attending and delivering Type 2 diabetes structured education programmes in Ireland and barriers and facilitators to attendance. Methods People with Type 2 diabetes who had attended one of the three programmes delivered in Ireland and educators from the three programmes took part in semi-structured telephone interviews. Interviews were audio-taped, transcribed and analysed using inductive thematic analysis. Results Twelve attendees and 14 educators were interviewed. Two themes were identified in relation to experiences of programme attendance and delivery: 'Structured education: addressing an unmet need' and 'The problem of non-attendance'. The third theme 'Barriers to attendance: can't go, won't go, don't know and poor system flow' outlined how practicalities of attending, lack of knowledge of the existence and benefits, and limited resources and support for education within the diabetes care pathway impacts on attendance. The final theme 'Supporting attendance: healthcare professionals and the diabetes care pathway' describes facilitators to participants' attendance and the strategies educators perceived to be important in increasing attendance. Conclusions Healthcare professionals have an important role in improving attendance at structured diabetes education programmes. Improving attendance may require promotion by healthcare professionals and for education to be better embedded and supported within the diabetes care pathway.
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