Designing effective culturally-competent diabetes care service in primary care

Peter Zeh, Harbinder K Sandhu, Ann-Marie Cannaby, Jackie A Sturt

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Aims: Systematic reviews have identified effective interventions for improving cultural competence in diabetes healthcare. This study aimed to explore and design an intervention to cater for the needs of ethnic minority groups (EMGs) with diabetes in Coventry.

Methods: A purposive participatory case study was conducted in one Coventry inner-city practice between April 2012 and March 2013, using weekly participant observations, monthly participatory group meetings and one post-participatory one-to-one semi-structured interview with three patients, four general practice (GP) staff and two multilingual link workers (MLWs). Data was analysed using qualitative methods. The research explored cultural issues with staff and patients within the GP and designed a culturally-competent diabetes service framework.

Results: The operational activities of this GP involving staff and patients demonstrated both helpful (e.g. some ethnic minority patients with cultural differences being consulted by healthcare professionals from the same ethnic backgrounds, thereby ensuring cultural concordances) and unhelpful practices (e.g. using children to interpret for their parents and at times patients with language barriers consulted without the use of professional or lay interpreters). The practice prioritised the designing of a Diabetes Specialist Multilingual Link Worker (DSMLW) model, to reduce the inequality in diabetes service provision. Key elements of the model were specialist training of MLW, referral pathway, information sharing, partnership working, and service commissioning.

Conclusions: A DSMLW framework to address deficits in GP cultural competence is now ready for pilot testing. Involving a broad group of stakeholders ensures interventions to improve EMGs’ access to effective diabetes care in primary care are appropriate and feasible.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2014
EventDiabetes UK Annual Conference - Arena and Conference Centre, Liverpool, United Kingdom
Duration: 5 Mar 20147 Mar 2014


ConferenceDiabetes UK Annual Conference
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


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