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Long-Term Effectiveness of the TIME Intervention to Improve Diabetes Outcomes in Low-Income Settings: a 2-Year Follow-Up.

Vaughan EM, Johnson E, Naik AD, Amspoker AB, Balasubramanyam A, Virani SS, Ballantyne CM, Johnston CA, Foreyt JP. Long-Term Effectiveness of the TIME Intervention to Improve Diabetes Outcomes in Low-Income Settings: a 2-Year Follow-Up. Journal of general internal medicine. 2022 Sep 1; 37(12):3062-3069.

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BACKGROUND: We previously found that a 6-month multidimensional diabetes program, TIME (Telehealth-Supported, Integrated Community Health Workers, Medication-Access) resulted in improved clinical outcomes. OBJECTIVE: To follow TIME participant clinical outcomes for 24 months PARTICIPANTS: Low-income Latino(a)s with type 2 diabetes DESIGN AND INTERVENTION: We collected post-intervention clinical data for five cohorts (n = 101, mean n = 20/cohort) who participated in TIME programs from 2018 to 2020 in Houston, Texas. MAIN MEASURES: We gathered HbA1c (primary outcome), weight, body mass index (BMI), and blood pressure data at baseline, 6 months (intervention end), and semiannually thereafter until 24 months after baseline to assess sustainability. We also evaluated participant loss to follow-up until 24 months. KEY RESULTS: Participants decreased HbA1c levels during the intervention (p < 0.0001) and maintained these improvements at each timepoint from baseline to 24 months (p range: < 0.0001 to 0.015). Participants reduced blood pressure levels during TIME and maintained these changes at each timepoint from baseline until 18 months (systolic p range < 0.0001 to 0.0005, diastolic p range: < 0.0001 to 0.008) but not at 24 months (systolic: p = 0.065; diastolic: p = 0.85). There were no significant weight changes during TIME or post-intervention: weight (p range = 0.07 to 0.77), BMI (p range = 0.11 to 0.71). Attrition rates (loss to follow-up during the post-intervention period) were 5.9% (6 months), 24.8% (12 months), 35.6% (18 months), and 41.8% (24 months). CONCLUSIONS: It is possible for vulnerable populations to maintain long-term glycemic and blood pressure improvements using a multiple dimensional intervention. Attrition rates rose over time but show promise given the majority of post-intervention timepoints occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic when low-income populations were most susceptible to suboptimal healthcare access. Future studies are needed to evaluate longitudinal outcomes of diabetes interventions conducted by local clinics rather than research teams.

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