Comparative analysis of diabetes self-management education programs in the European Union Member States

Sarama Saha, Henna Riemenschneider, Gabriele Müller, Diane Levin-Zamir, Stephan Van den Broucke, Peter E.H. Schwarz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Diabetes self-management education (DSME) is generally considered as an integral part of diabetes care. The availability of different types of self-management in the European Union Member States (EUMS) remains uncertain. The aim of this study is to perform a comparative analysis of existing DSME programs (DSMEP) implemented in EUMS. Unpublished data regarding DSME in the EUMS was assessed with Diabetes Literacy Survey using wiki tool (WT) targeting patients and different stakeholders. An additional literature review (LR) was performed in PubMed to identify published studies regarding DSMEP in the EUMS from 2004 to 2014. A total of 102 DSMEP implemented in EUMS were reported in the WT and 154 programs were identified from the LR. Comparative analysis of the data indicated that a majority of programs are aimed at adults and only a minority at children and elderly. Only a small percentage of the programs utilize information technology for teaching and learning, and only one out of five programs pay attention to depression. The identified DSMEP aimed primarily to empower patients through increasing knowledge and changing attitudes and beliefs towards diabetes. This study provides an overview of the present state-of-the-art on diabetes self-management education programs in the 28 EUMS. To increase participation, existing DSMEP should be made more accessible to the patients as well as tailored to specific patient groups.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)529-537
Number of pages9
JournalPrimary Care Diabetes
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Primary Care Diabetes Europe


  • Comparative analysis
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Diabetes self-management education program
  • Empowerment strategy
  • Literacy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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