Asian/Pacific Island Nursing Journal

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Similar to other parts of the world, the prevalence of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) in the Asia-Pacific Region has rapidly increased during the last few decades. The purposes of this pilot study were to determine the feasibility and the effects of a capacity building program for Village Health Volunteers (VHVs) to support self-management in a T2DM high risk population from a rural subdistrict in Northeast Thailand. Both quantitative and qualitative data were collected using surveys, focus group discussions, and in-depth interviews. Data were analyzed and used to develop a 12-week capacity building program for VHVs. This program was then implemented on 60 subjects at high risk of T2DM in the selected community.

According to the paired t-test and Wilcoxon-signed rank test, VHVs had higher scores on knowledge and self-efficacy of T2DM prevention after a 12 week intervention (p = .03 and p = .02, respectively). Study participants at risk for T2DM also had a significant increase in T2DM knowledge and self-management (p < .001). Implementation of the capacity building program for VHVs in Northeast Thailand was feasible. The key successes were strong community bonding, community empowerment, and support from family and public health nurses. Effects of the program should be examined with those in other Asia-Pacific countries.