Vermont Department of Health - Diabetes Program and 1 more...less...


# of Vermonters at risk for diabetes who complete the Diabetes Prevention Program.

63Q4 2021

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Story Behind the Curve

Last Updated: January 15, 2020

Author: Diabetes Program, Vermont Department of Health

Approximately one in sixteen Vermonters were diagnosed with prediabetes in 2014 (most recent data available). Because 90% of those with prediabetes do not know they have it, it is estimated that over one third of individuals actually have this manageable condition. Those with prediabetes have reduced ability to utilize the hormone insulin, causing an increase in blood glucose levels and consequently an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Risk factors include age (45 years or older), overweight, family history of type 2 diabetes, elevated blood pressure, physical inactivity, diabetes during pregnancy, or giving birth to a baby greater than nine pounds. The National Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) is an intensive, year long, evidence-based workshop that has proven results in facilitating lifestyle change and preventing or delaying the onset of diabetes. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is dedicated to increasing participation in diabetes prevention programming such as the national DPP. Research shows that successful completion of this type of program reduces the development of diabetes by 58%. The Vermont Department of Health (VDH) and CDC collect data from participants who complete the DPP program (attend at least 9/16 weekly sessions). With this information, VDH can observe the impact of specific factors on completion of the program (e.g. source of referral, socio-economic status, etc.) as well as clinical outcomes. Vermont recently transitioned from the YMCA DPP curriculum to CDC's, "Prevent T2", curriculum. The transition to a new curriculum resulted in a brief interruption in DPP offerings and data collection as program facilitators were trained in the new curriculum and program data reporting mechanisms were updated. Program data for the most recent quarter is now available, but may be missing data on up to three programs, likely the reason for the Q4 2017 and Q1 2018 dips below the target number of DPP completers.

  • Community Health Improvement at the University of Vermont and the Vermont Blueprint for Health are the key partners administering the program.
  • They collaborate with VDH to establish high level strategies in marketing the program and increasing participation statewide.
  • The Blueprint-funded Regional Coordinators in each health service area along with their Community Health Team colleagues are also key partners; they assist primary care practices in utilizing community-based prevention and self-management programs like the DPP to accomplish the activities and goals of their patient-centered medical homes. A microsite hosted by the Blueprint in collaboration with Community Health Improvement and VDH facilitates the delivery of program information and enrollment statewide:
What Works

Vermont Department of Health (VDH) uses BRFSS (Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System) data to determine the number of Vermonters at risk for diabetes. These self-reported data underrepresent the prevalence of prediabetes. Most people (90%) affected are not aware of their condition. Marketing plans to consumers and providers continue to raise awareness of the problem and available programs; this leads to increased access for qualifying Vermonters. VDH relies on Community Health Improvement for data about program participants. VDH partners with primary care providers at select practices to implement quality improvement initiatives that utilize electronic medical records to identify patients suitable for program referral. 

Action Plan

In 2019 VDH Staff members will:

1. Work with Community Health Improvement and Blueprint to share resources in marketing and collecting data.

2. Work with Community Health Improvement to analyze registration, participation and completion data as part of continuous program evaluation efforts.

3. Work with HARK (marketing-communications contractors) to refine/improve the website and purchase, develop and distribute media, including a new video short, illustrating the DPP benefits and class structure ("session 0").

4. Consider how we may use the resources available from the relatively new national site: .

5. Work with the Vermont Blueprint for Health and Community Health Improvement to develop a comprehensive evaluation that will illustrate participant changes in patient activation, diabetes biomarkers and healthcare utilization.

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