Peer support for people with diabetes (PWD) improves self-management and self-efficacy. A 2014 meta-analysis concluded that online peer support improved A1C significantly in people with type 2 diabetes (T2D). In Tier I, the Intercultural Diabetes Online Community Research (iDOCr) council was formed to bring together individuals affected by diabetes who engaged in the diabetes online community (DOC) and are interested in researching online peer support through a comparative effectiveness research (CER) question. The iDOCr council includes English- and Spanish-speaking DOC members with type 1 diabetes and T2D, advocates, clinicians, caregivers, academics, nonprofits, industry, and researchers.
In Tier I and Tier II, iDOCr participated in Twitter chats to involve a wider DOC community in discussions about issues impacting PWD and CER questions of importance. To raise awareness, the iDOCr council developed Facebook and Twitter pages and a website. Leadership shared information with clinicians, researchers, and PWD at national meetings in poster and oral presentations. The council identified a research area of interest addressing English- and Spanish-speaking people with T2D, using continuous glucose monitors with and without peer support.
The goals for Tier III are (1) establish an advisory board with multiple stakeholders; (2) raise awareness of iDOCr to increase partnership opportunities for research and funding; (3) interact with and learn from the English- and Spanish-speaking DOC through Facebook, Twitter chats, and blogs; (4) refine the CER question; and (5) design a clinical research study and submit a Letter of Intent.