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Using community theater to improve diabetes education in Fiji

  • Philip SzmedraEmail author
  • Anand Chand
  • Mohit Prasad
  • Thomas DeTitta
  • Cathy Rozmus
Original Article

Abstract

Diabetes afflicts upwards of 425 million people globally with 80% of that number living in the developing world. The World Health Organization has declared diabetes a global health threat. Here, we describe a Community Theater (CT) project implemented in Fiji, a nation where 30% of the adult population is diabetic. Current diabetes education methods used by the Ministry of Health in Fiji have proven to be ineffective in stemming the growing incidence of the disease. Our research hypothesis was that significant improvements would occur from baseline in the physical and psychosocial markers among a group of outpatients being treated at a diabetic clinic who were exposed to CT interventions over a 23-month period. Significant improvement in HbA1c levels occurred in the intervention group compared to a control group that was not exposed to CT. We conclude that novel educational approaches are needed, including CT, to combat the growing epidemic of diabetes that threatens Fiji and all other Pacific Island nations.

Keywords

Diabetes education Community theater Fiji Pacific Islands Public health 

Notes

Funding

This research was sponsored by a grant from BRIDGES, a program of the International Diabetes Federation, and Eli Lilly Company and Lilly Diabetes.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethics approval and consent to participate

This research was approved by the Institutional Review Boards of both Georgia Southwestern State University and the University of the South Pacific. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Supplementary material

13410_2018_610_MOESM1_ESM.docx (2.6 mb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 2644 kb)

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Copyright information

© Research Society for Study of Diabetes in India 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Business AdministrationGeorgia Southwestern State UniversityAmericusUSA
  2. 2.Faculty of Business and EconomicsUniversity of the South PacificSuvaFiji
  3. 3.Faculty of Arts, Law, and EducationUniversity of the South PacificSuvaFiji
  4. 4.World CommunitiesAmericusUSA
  5. 5.School of NursingThe University of Texas Health Science Center at HoustonHoustonUSA

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