Integrating chronic care with primary care activities: enriching healthcare staff knowledge and skills and improving glycemic control of a cohort of people with diabetes through the First Line Diabetes Care Project in the Philippines

Grace Marie V Ku, Guy Kegels

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


BACKGROUND: This study investigated the effects of integrating primary chronic care with current healthcare activities in two local government health units (LGHU) of the Philippines on knowledge and skills of the LGHU staff and clinical outcomes for people with diabetes.

DESIGN: Integration was accomplished through health service reorganization, (re)distribution of chronic care tasks, and training of LGHU staff. Levels of the staff's pre- and post-training diabetes knowledge and of their self-assessment of diabetes care-related skills were measured. Primary diabetes care with emphasis on self-care development was provided to a cohort of people with diabetes. Glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c) and obesity measures were collected prior to and one year after full project implementation.

RESULTS: The training workshop improved diabetes knowledge (p<0.001) and self-assessed skills (p<0.001) of the LGHU staff. Significant reductions in HbA1c (p<0.001), waist-hip ratio (p<0.001) and waist circumference (p=0.011) of the cohort were noted. Although the reduction in HbA1c was somewhat greater among those whose community-based care providers showed improvement in knowledge and self-assessed skills, the difference was not statistically significant.

CONCLUSIONS: Primary care for chronic conditions such as diabetes may be integrated with other healthcare activities in health services of low-to-middle-income countries such as the Philippines, utilizing pre-existing human resources for health, and may improve clinical endpoints.

Original languageEnglish
JournalGlobal Health Action
Pages (from-to)25286
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Adult
  • Anthropometry
  • Blood Glucose/analysis
  • Chronic Disease
  • Clinical Competence
  • Decision Support Techniques
  • Delivery of Health Care, Integrated
  • Diabetes Mellitus/therapy
  • Female
  • Glycated Hemoglobin A/analysis
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Inservice Training
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Philippines
  • Primary Health Care/organization & administration
  • Program Evaluation
  • Prospective Studies
  • Quality Improvement
  • Self Care

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