Aging, Community and Health Research Group (ACHRU)

McMaster University


ACHRU Researchers Are Transforming the Way Diabetes Care is Delivered to Seniors

Photo Courtesy of McMaster Daily News

Drs. Maureen Markle-Reid and Jenny Ploeg developed a model that brings diabetes care for seniors out of the clinic and into the community.

 “75% of the factors that influence health lie outside the health care system,” says Markle-Reid, Canada Research Chair in Aging, Chronic Disease and Health Promotion Interventions. “Our idea was to deliver care to people in a place that is very senior-friendly and where we can focus on all the determinants of health, not just on providing medical treatment. We wanted to ensure that we were addressing all of their needs– medical, social and psychological– and addressing them in a holistic way.”

The program, which began as a pilot project funded by the Labarge Optimal Aging Initiative, brings registered nurses and registered dietitians, who are certified diabetes educators, from local diabetes clinics into a community centre– either a senior’s centre or the YMCA– where they work as a team with community centre staff and volunteers to deliver a health promotion program, or ‘intervention,’ for seniors with diabetes and multiple chronic conditions.

“The program was seen as very valuable by the participants,” says Ploeg, a professor in McMaster’s School of Nursing, who adds that the response from seniors throughout the six-month study was overwhelmingly positive. “They received care in a much more supportive environment where there are social supports, education and exercise. They could share a meal together and learn from each other. People really enjoyed that.”

Read the Full Story - McMaster Daily News

Published on: October 1, 2016

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