Grant Application

Linda Siminerio, RN, PhD, director, and Jodi Krall, PhD, of the University of Pittsburgh Diabetes Institute, Amy Donihi, PharmD, and Mary Hatam, diabetes nurse specialist, of UPMC Presbyterian, Cindy Donovan, diabetes educator, of UPMC East, andJanice Koshinsky, diabetes educator, of UPMC McKeesport


Proposed Innovation

Approximately one-third of all patients hospitalized at UPMC have a diabetes-related diagnosis. During their hospital stay, patients don’t have enough time — or are too ill, or overwhelmed — to learn what they need to know about their diabetes care and keeping themselves healthy and safe at home.

The Nurse Education and Transition (NEAT) program provides inpatient nurses with a diabetes tool kit they can use to teach patients the basic information and survival skills needed to safely care for themselves after discharge. It also includes an outpatient transition program providing patients with an opportunity for more in-depth diabetes education.


Improvements in Action

During focus group discussions, nurses expressed the need for user-friendly technology to educate patients about diabetes. With their input, brief videos were developed and loaded onto iPads addressing such topics as nutrition, testing blood sugar, insulin injections by pen and syringe, and the importance of physical activity. Quizzes also were developed to ensure patient understanding.

The NEAT program closes the gap from hospital to home by providing nurses with the tools they need to educate patients about diabetes, plus a transition program linking patients to outpatient diabetes education services.


Results — In Progress

Through the NEAT project, 26 nurses underwent training to use the iPads for pilot programs at UPMC Presbyterian, UPMC McKeesport, and UPMC East in units identified as having more patients with diabetes. The project shows promise that it will improve patient education during hospitalization, result in a better transition to outpatient services and ultimately improve self-management of the disease after discharge. After an evaluation of the pilot program, project leaders hope to implement NEAT at all UPMC hospitals.

View the Nurse Education and Transition (NEAT) model publication.