Medical Assistant Coaching to Support Diabetes Self-Care Among Low-Income Racial/Ethnic Minority Populations: Randomized Controlled Trial

Laurie Ruggiero, Barth B. Riley, Rosalba Hernandez, Lauretta T. Quinn, Ben S. Gerber, Amparo Castillo, Joseph Day, Diana Ingram, Yamin Wang, Paula Butler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Innovative, culturally tailored strategies are needed to extend diabetes education and support efforts in lower-resourced primary care practices serving racial/ethnic minority groups. A randomized controlled trial (RCT) examined the effect of a diabetes self-care coaching intervention delivered by medical assistants and the joint effect of intervention and ethnicity over time. The randomized repeated-measures design included 270 low-income African American and Hispanic/Latino patients with type 2 diabetes. The 1-year clinic- and telephone-based medical assistant coaching intervention was culturally tailored and guided by theoretical frameworks. A1C was obtained, and a self-care measure was completed at baseline, 6 months, and 12 months. Data were analyzed using mixed-effects models with and without adjustment for covariates. There was a significant overall improvement in mean self-care scores across time, but no intervention effect. Results revealed differences in self-care patterns across racial/ethnic subgroups. No differences were found for A1C levels across time or group.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1052-1073
Number of pages22
JournalWestern Journal of Nursing Research
Issue number9
StatePublished - Oct 1 2014



  • diabetes mellitus
  • health behavior
  • minority
  • self-management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)

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