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Health Education Intervention for Persons With Type 2 Diabetes: Research Critique

Diabetes is a prevalent chronic disease that affects millions of people worldwide. Self-care education is critical to diabetes management, as it can reduce the risk of developing complications and hospital readmission. This paper’s purpose is to critically appraise two quantitative research studies on patient education programs for diabetes patients. The studies’ findings will be used to answer the PICOT question: “For diabetes patients (P), does self-care education on clinic visits (I), as compared to no self-care education, lower the risk of developing diabetes-related complications and readmission (O) for a given period of six months (T)?”

Background of Studies

Patient education programs for Brazilians with prediabetes and diabetes were the focus of research by Ghisi et al. (2021). The purpose of this research was to learn more about the educational requirements of people with diabetes so that a suitable intervention might be designed. Patient education programs for Brazilians with prediabetes and diabetes: how helpful are they? This was the study’s primary research question. The impact of a nursing-intensive health education intervention for people with type 2 diabetes was studied in a quasi-experimental research by Martos-Cabrera et al. (2021). The study’s objective was to determine whether the intervention could improve the quality of life, self-care behaviours, and glycemic control. The research question was, “Does a nursing-intense health education intervention improve glycemic control, quality of life, and self-care behaviours in persons with type 2 diabetes?”

How Do These Two Articles Support the Nursing Practice Problem You Chose?

These two articles support the nursing practice problem by providing evidence of the effectiveness of patient education programs in improving diabetes patients’ outcomes. Both studies used interventions that included patient education and evaluated the outcomes of these interventions. Ghisi et al. (2021) developed a patient education program tailored to the needs of Brazilians living with diabetes and prediabetes. The program focused on managing diabetes and prediabetes and aimed to improve patients’ knowledge and self-care behaviours. Martos-Cabrera et al. (2021) used a nursing-intense health education intervention to improve self-care behaviours, quality of life, and glycemic control in persons with type 2 diabetes. The comparison and intervention groups in the studies are similar to those identified in the PICOT question. Both studies compared an intervention group that received patient education to a control group that did not.

Method of Studies

The research conducted by Ghisi et al. (2021) used a mixed-methods methodology, including quantitative and qualitative approaches to gathering and examining data. The patient education program was developed via the use of focus groups and individual interviews, and the efficacy of the program was evaluated through the use of a quasi-experimental research methodology. One of the advantages of the mixed-methods approach that Ghisi et al. (2021) adopted is that it made it possible to construct and evaluate a patient education program that was individualized to meet the requirements of the participants in the study. One of the drawbacks of the research is that the sample size was on the smaller side, and it was only conducted in one area of Brazil.

Martos-Cabrera et al. (2021) employed a quasi-experimental design with a pre-test and post-test assessment. The control group got the standard level of medical attention, whereas the intervention group was given nursing-focused health education. One benefit of this design is that it allows comparing outcomes between the two groups. One limitation is that the study was conducted in one hospital in Spain, which may limit the generalizability of the results.

Results of Studies

According to Ghisi et al. (2021), those with diabetes who participated in the patient education program saw significant gains in managing their condition independently. Knowledge, self-care practices, and participants’ overall quality of life all increased significantly among the intervention group compared to the control. The program was determined to be doable and participant-friendly in the research. The research had flaws, such as a small sample size, a narrow study area, and a short follow-up time. Diabetes patients’ self-care and glycemic control behaviours improved with the nursing-intense health education intervention, according to a study by Martos-Cabrera et al. (2021). HbA1c, BMI, and waist circumference were all significantly lower among the intervention group’s members than those in the control group. The intervention was also determined to be practicable and well-accepted by the study’s participants.

Studies examining the efficacy of patient education programs in enhancing diabetes patients’ knowledge and self-care practices are many, and include Ghisi et al. (2021) and Martos-Cabrera et al. (2021), among others. Sun et al. (2017) conducted a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. They concluded that diabetes patient education programs improved glycemic control, diabetes knowledge, and self-care behaviours in individuals with type 2 diabetes. Results showed that bigger glycemic control improvements were seen with more intense and personalized regimens.

The findings of these three studies have important repercussions for nursing practice because they suggest that patient education programs and health education interventions with a strong nursing component can potentially improve diabetes patients’ knowledge, quality of life self-care behaviours, and glycemic control. Nurses can play a significant part in assisting diabetic patients in efficiently managing their disease by providing them with information and assistance. If healthcare providers want to enhance the health outcomes for diabetic patients, they should think about adopting the programs and interventions listed below. According to the findings of these studies, patient education programs, particularly those that are extensive, individualized, and make use of techniques such as motivational interviewing, have the potential to be effective in improving diabetes patients’ knowledge as well as their self-care behaviours. However, the studies underline how important it is to overcome constraints such as small sample numbers, the possibility of selection bias, and short follow-up periods.

Ethical Considerations

One ethical consideration in conducting research is ensuring participants’ privacy and confidentiality. Researchers should obtain informed consent from participants and ensure their anonymity and confidentiality throughout the study. Another ethical consideration is avoiding harm to participants. Researchers should ensure that the study procedures do not cause physical, psychological, or emotional harm to participants. They should also ensure that the benefits of the study outweigh the risks and that participants receive appropriate care if any adverse events occur. Ghisi et al. (2021) and Martos-Cabrera et al. (2021) obtained informed consent from participants and ensured their privacy and confidentiality throughout the study. They also monitored participants’ safety and provided appropriate care if any adverse events occurred.

Furthermore, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) has established a code of ethics for nurses emphasising the importance of ethical considerations in nursing practice and research. The ADA code of ethics emphasizes the need to respect the dignity, privacy, and confidentiality of patients and to ensure that nursing practice and research do not cause harm to patients. Overall, ethical considerations are essential in nursing research, and researchers should take the necessary measures to protect participants’ privacy, confidentiality, and well-being. The studies by Ghisi et al. (2021) and Martos-Cabrera et al. (2021) demonstrated their adherence to ethical considerations, and their findings provide evidence for the effectiveness of patient education programs for diabetes management.


The two quantitative studies by Ghisi et al. (2021) and Martos-Cabrera et al. (2021) demonstrate that patient education programs and nursing-intense health education interventions can improve diabetes patients’ knowledge, quality of life self-care behaviors, and glycemic control. These interventions can be implemented by nurses to support diabetes patients in managing their condition effectively. However, the studies’ limitations, such as small sample sizes and limited geographical regions, should be considered when interpreting the findings. Future research with larger sample sizes and more diverse populations is needed to confirm these interventions’ effectiveness and generalizability.


American Diabetes Association. (2021). 1. Improving Care and Promoting Health in Populations: Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes—2021. Diabetes Care44(Supplement_1), S7-S14.

Ghisi, G. L. D. M., Seixas, M. B., Pereira, D. S., Cisneros, L. L., Ezequiel, D. G. A., Aultman, C., … & da Silva, L. P. (2021). Patient education program for Brazilians living with diabetes and prediabetes: findings from a development study. BMC public health, 21(1), 1-16.

Martos-Cabrera, M. B., Gómez-Urquiza, J. L., Cañadas-González, G., Romero-Bejar, J. L., Suleiman-Martos, N., Cañadas-De la Fuente, G. A., & Albendín-García, L. (2021). Nursing-Intense Health Education Intervention for Persons with Type 2 Diabetes: A Quasi-Experimental Study. Healthcare (Basel, Switzerland), 9(7), 832.

Sun, Y., You, W., Almeida, F., Estabrooks, P., & Davy, B. (2017). The effectiveness and cost of lifestyle interventions including nutrition education for diabetes prevention: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics117(3), 404-421.


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