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Pathways to Prevention in Colorado

Focus areas: Program evaluation. Case story development. Quality improvement techniques to improve public health practice.

Project Overview

1outof3The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) is an evidence-based lifestyle change program for preventing type 2 diabetes being delivered by over 625 organizations nationally. Like many state and local health departments, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) has engaged a number of stakeholders in efforts to make this program easily accessible for the estimated one-third of American adults with prediabetes.

Emory Centers Diabetes Training and Technical Assistance Center (DTTAC), in collaboration with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), conducted a needs assessment to obtain information from Colorado organizations delivering the National DPP lifestyle change program.

Key topics included:

  • How participants are accessing the lifestyle change program
  • Barriers to implementing the program
  • Priority topics for training and implementation assistance

Translating Data to Action

Data were collected through a web-based survey and key informant interviews with organizations delivering the program. In collaboration with CDPHE, seasoned Lifestyle Coaches, and experts in DPP implementation, technical assistance products were tailored and delivered in multiple forms in direct response to identified needs.

Technical assistance focused on strategies to overcome common challenges of:

  • Participant retention (maintaining attendance through the yearlong program)
  • Covering the cost of the program
  • Creating formalized referral systems with healthcare providers & health systems


For Organizations Delivering the Program

Technical assistance was provided through:

  • Webinar series
  • On-site & phone consultations
  • Tip Sheet: Making Diabetes Prevention Programs Work

For Healthcare Providers & Health Systems

Practical tips for establishing & enhancing referral systems were disseminated through:

  • A panel discussion at a CDPHE conference
  • Case studies

To learn more

Lessons from this work were published in the November 2016 issue of AADE In Practice. Read more here about successful healthcare referral systems in the article titled, "Pathways to Diabetes Prevention: Two Referral Models for the National Diabetes Prevention Program."

Contact us for details about this project or our evaluation & quality improvement services for public health programs.

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About the Emory Centers for Training and Technical Assistance

Housed within the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University, the Emory Centers for Training and Technical Assistance helps public health practitioners develop the skills, programs and policy action needed to build healthier communities and has provided capacity‐building services to community, state and national programs in all 50 states and territories since 2001.