Improving Diabetes Prevention and Management

Grantee Name

New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation

Funding Area

Improving Diabetes Prevention and Management

Publication Date

April 2014

Grant Amount


Grant Date:

July 2011 – April 2013

Elderly New Yorkers with uncontrolled diabetes often have difficulty finding community resources that offer easy, accessible, senior-focused exercise and wellness programs.

As one of the largest integrated care delivery systems in New York City, the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) set out to address this issue by designing and implementing the Community of Older Adults Care About Their Health (WeCOACH) program. This community-based diabetes management program matched patients age 60 years and older who had uncontrolled diabetes with peer coaches. Trained as community health workers, peer coaches were responsible for patient recruitment; exercise instruction and motivation; education on diabetes and self-care strategies; patient navigation assistance; and regular patient consultation. WeCOACH partnered with local nonprofit senior centers funded by New York City’s Department for the Aging to hold exercise classes and to link participants with other programming and services.

In 2011, NYHealth awarded HHC a grant to evaluate the WeCOACH program.

Outcomes and Lessons Learned

  • Produced a final report that included a description of the intervention and a cost-benefit analysis;
  • Found that the WeCOACH program led to significant improvements in several areas, including overall health, diabetes self-care, and mean HbA1c levels. The evaluation also determined that, in general, participants were satisfied with the program and found it to be useful and convenient; and
  • Determined the savings associated with the program—based on the cost-benefit analysis— to be $544 per participant per year, $518 of which was a result of reductions in outpatient visits alone.