'Oh, I've got an appointment': A qualitative interview study exploring how to support attendance at diabetes screening after gestational diabetes.
Diabetic medicine : a journal of the British Diabetic Association 2020 ; 38: e14650.
DOI : 10.1111/dme.14650
PubMed ID : 34268798
To explore the views of women with a history of gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) on suggested practical approaches to support diabetes screening attendance after GDM, which is recommended but poorly attended.
We conducted semi-structured interviews with 20 participants in Cambridgeshire, UK who had been diagnosed with GDM and were 3-48 months postpartum. Interviews covered whether participants had been screened and why, plans for future screening and their views on potential interventions to facilitate attendance (at the first postpartum test and annual testing). Framework analysis was used to analyse the transcripts. The interview schedule, suggested interventions and thematic framework were based on a recent systematic review.
Sixteen participants had undergone screening since pregnancy, explaining that they had an appointment arranged and wanted reassurance that they did not have diabetes. The participants who had not been tested were not aware that it was recommended. Only 13 had planned to attend subsequent tests at the start of the interview. Eight themes to support future attendance were discussed. The majority of the participants agreed that changing the processes for arranging tests, offering choice in test location and combining appointments would facilitate attendance. Child-friendly clinics, more opportunities to understand GDM and the role of postpartum testing, stopping self-testing and increasing their GP's awareness of their pregnancy received inconsistent feedback. The nature of the test used did not appear to influence attendance.
The participants wanted to be screened for diabetes after GDM. We have identified interventions that could be relatively simply incorporated into routine practice to facilitate screening attendance, such as flexibility in the appointment location or time and sending invitations for tests.