A study to evaluate the effectiveness of the Salus Education Online diabetes training program for improving knowledge and self-efficacy of school district employees
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The number of children with diabetes continues to increase in epidemic proportions. The care of these students extends from the home into school, requiring school personnel to be adequately trained to administer care. Several studies have highlighted the necessity of diabetes training for school personnel to improve the provision of care for diabetic students in the school setting (Siminerio & Koerbel, 2000; Wagner & James, 2006; Mandali & Gordon, 2009; Hayes-Bohn, Neumark-Sztainer, Mellin & Patterson, 2004). Studies have explored diabetes training programs for school nurses (Fisher, 2006; Nabors, Troillett, Nash, & Masiulis, 2005); however, limited research has been devoted to looking at the efficacy of such programs for unlicensed personnel. The current study evaluated the effectiveness of the Salus Education Online Diabetes Education program by comparing the change in knowledge and self-efficacy scores of the participants by current occupation and prior diabetes training status. In addition, the study examined the association between user satisfaction with the online program and change in knowledge and self-efficacy scores. Results of this study showed a significant increase in the knowledge and confidence scores of the participants from pre to posttest. Although unlicensed diabetes care assistants (UDCA's) had baseline knowledge and confidence scores that were lower than nurses, they had significant change scores resulting in similar posttest scores. In addition, those with no prior diabetes training had significant change in knowledge and confidence scores resulting in posttest scores that were almost equivocal to those with prior diabetes training. Knowledge and confidence change scores were not associated with the participants' rating of the usefulness of the program. Finally, there was a significant, positive relationship between the change in knowledge scores and change in confidence scores; demonstrating that as participants' knowledge increased from the training program, their confidence in administering diabetes care increased also. As a result of these findings, recommendations for follow up research were suggested to include assessing implications for practice and outcomes for diabetic students. Recommendations for the application of the findings were also provided. Schools can utilize online programs to train school staff on diabetes.