Colunga implements diabetes prevention study


With the increasing population of patients at risk of diabetes, RN Jessica Colunga has created a study aimed at reaching these people.

“I chose diabetes as my focus due to the high number of patients in the community, but also because diabetes directly impacts my family,” Colunga explained.

Colunga said that she began this in order to complete her dissertation through the Chamberlain School of Nursing. She is working to obtain her Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) using this study. Colunga also stated that her work has been supported by Dr. Linda Howard-Burch, whom she has been working with throughout her study.

“I will be implementing an evidence-based practice intervention through this study project,” Colunga said. “The DNP project will focus on the implementation of the NIH Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) aimed at reaching the population that is at risk of diabetes.”

According to Colunga, each individual in the project will receive one-on-one education on the risk of type 2 diabetes.

“The practice problem focuses on the continued increased number of newly diagnosed diabetic patients in our community,” Colunga explained. “We will discuss what they can do to decrease their risk, and will obtain information on lifestyle modification, including proper food choices and physical activity.”

Colunga’s study will be ten weeks in length, with the goal of the study being to improve the patients’ current elevated glucose to normal levels. The participants will be encouraged to increase their physical activity to at least a total of 150 minutes per week. They will also collaborate with a registered dietician to focus on decreasing the amount of fat and calories in their diets.

According to Colunga, one of her future goals is to implement a similar program that will eventually be available to the community.

“I hope that after the study, it is possible to create a diabetes education program here at PCMH,” Colunga said.