Evaluation of a community-based intervention (STOP-DM) for Korean Americans with type 2 diabetes: Measured vs. perceived health outcomes
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Type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM) is a serious health problem in Asian-American communities, including the Korean American immigrants (KAI), one of the most underserved and understudied minority populations in the US. More than 50% of KAI have no health insurance and rarely receive routine checkups. As a result, KAI with asymptomatic chronic diseases, such as DM, go undiagnosed and inadequately treated. These health risks are further compounded by low health literacy levels. KAIs with type 2 DM urgently need effective interventions that help them achieve better glycemic control and restore their self-confidence with regard to diabetic management. Methods: To address this critical need within the KAI community, Dr. Kim’s research team designed and executed a NIH funded translational study trial (NIDDK R18) of a community-based glucose control intervention program for Korean American immigrants (KAI) with type-2 diabetes mellitus (DM). This project tests the effectiveness of a multifaceted DM management program (STOP-DM) with regard to the cultural and social needs of KAI with type 2 DM. This evaluation includes data analysis, interpretations, and dissemination of the findings with regard to cultural tailoring and health literacy enhancement of the intervention. Findings: Data analysis is expected to support the belief that the self-help aspect and tailoring strategies significantly improve intervention outcomes by empowering patients through enhanced knowledge of DM and diet, utilizing available technology to develop the ability to self –monitor their glucose control status, facilitating better communication with their health care providers, and enhancing health literacy and general problem-solving skills.