Louisiana success stories

LA Success Stories
Quality improvement endeavors can often feel overwhelming, but chances are, you can learn from the experiences that another physician, hospital or nursing home has had in a similar situation. Coupled with support from Quality Insights Quality Innovation Network, learning what has worked for others — and what didn't — is a valuable strategic planning component. 

We encourage you to read the success stories, contact us for more information, and also let us know if you have a Quality Insights' success story to share.

EDC Inspires One Woman to Educate Others

EDC LogoAfter attending an Everyone with Diabetes Counts (EDC) class at Claiborne Creek Senior Housing in Ouachita Parish in Louisiana, Ethel Ross was determined to help others learn the valuable information she gained after struggling to understand diabetes self-management for so long.  
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Ross proudly holds her Certificate of Completion of the EDC program. 
EDC in Louisiana uses the Diabetes Empowerment Education Program (DEEP) curriculum created by the University of Illinois at Chicago. DEEP teaches people with diabetes and/or their caregivers the skills they need to be in control of their health. Consisting of six weekly classes, participants learn about diabetes risks, nutrition, weight management, how to properly manage medications and much more. Based on group interaction and working together, the classes empower and inspire the participants to feel confident about their health and themselves.
Ethel’s story began with a routine visit to her doctor. There, she learned her glucose, or blood sugar level, was up from her previous visit.
“My provider at the time told me we were going to watch it and monitor it,” Ethel said. “I did not know what that meant.”
Ethel continued to follow the same diet and had no real strategy to manage her blood sugar. As a result, she ended up in the emergency room of her local hospital with a blood sugar level of 745 and a yeast infection. She was soon admitted for a four-day hospital stay.
When she returned home from the hospital, she continued to struggle with fluctuations in her blood sugar, with levels often dropping at night. But, Ethel maintained an optimistic attitude. 
“I can reverse this,” she kept thinking. “I have BIG will power!” 
Ethel’s husband has diabetes and she is his primary caregiver. As she watched his journey with diabetes, self-doubt began to consume her. She would sometimes think to herself, “This is the end for me.” 
Ethel was eventually referred to a diabetes class, but her experience was not optimal. She found the classes impersonal. Questions were group-based allowing no opportunity for one-on-one discussion. 
“We were thrown into a group and told what to do instead of teaching us skills,” she said. 
Her friend at Claiborne Creek knew about her health struggles and invited her to attend EDC classes. Through EDC, she found greater value and had a more positive experience.  
“I knew I needed to get on track!” she exclaimed. “This set of classes was much more interactive and I was gaining knowledge and skills about how to self-manage a diabetes diagnosis.”
Ethel was happy to learn more about portion control, the importance of measuring food and timely eating. She learned more about the possible complications of diabetes and how smoking can lead to insulin resistance. She also learned about the emotional challenges of living with diabetes. 
“If you do not have this type of education, I can see where it can cause depression,” she said.
Ethel was so encouraged by her experience with EDC, she plans to receive training as a Peer Educator with the program. This will allow her to teach diabetes self-management education to others in her community who struggle with diabetes.  
“It is a challenge to live with diabetes every day,” she said. “Knowledge is power!” 
As part of the Everyone with Diabetes Counts (EDC) program, Quality Insights facilitates free diabetes education classes throughout Louisiana. For a list of available workshops, view the schedule. If you are interested in learning more or getting involved, contact Karen Ziecker, Quality Improvement Specialist, at (225) 926-6353 or kziecker@eqhs.org
About Quality Insights Quality Innovation Network
Quality Insights is the Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO) for Delaware, Louisiana, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Quality Insights collaborates with health care providers, patients and allied organizations across the network to bring about widespread, significant improvements in the quality of care they deliver. Our goal is better care, smarter spending and healthier people. Learn more about us.