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Geisinger becomes the first member of Risant Health

Participants responded to personalized risk assessment and program choice

DANVILLE, Pa. – Communicating personal risk for developing type 2 diabetes and then offering a choice of risk reduction and management programs resulted in higher than expected enrollment and improved outcomes, a team of Geisinger researchers found. 

A relatively low number of people who are at risk for type 2 diabetes are aware of their personal risk and of what steps they can take to reduce or manage their risk. These risk factors include overweight or obesity, age, an unhealthy diet or exercise routine, and family history.

In their study, the research team sent letters to 328 patients at three Geisinger primary care sites communicating their personal risk of progression to diabetes within three years. The letters also included the patient’s estimated risk reduction with a 5, 10 or 15 percent weight loss, and offered a choice of five free, 6-month risk management programs.

The recruitment response rate for the risk management programs was just over 25 percent, which was significantly greater than expected, the research team found. After six months, body mass index (BMI), hemoglobin A1C (HbA1C), and diabetes risk had improved in all patients, and both BMI and HbA1C had sustained improvement after 12 months.

The findings were published in the October 12 issue of Patient Education and Counseling

“Many people with risk factors for developing type 2 diabetes are unaware of their risk and of the steps they can take to reduce their risk,” said Lisa Bailey-Davis, Ph.D., associate professor for Geisinger’s Obesity Institute and the study’s lead author. “We were pleased to discover that clear and direct communication of personal risk and offering a choice of risk management programs led to significant engagement and better health outcomes.”

Geisinger offers a Diabetes Risk Calculator through the MyGeisinger patient portal, allowing patients to learn about their personal risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Geisinger primary care providers can see their patients’ personal risk scores and can refer interested patients to risk management programs like the Geisinger Wellness Diabetes Prevention Program, a registered dietitian, or a weight management specialist. 

For more information about diabetes and resources available at Geisinger, click here.

About Geisinger
Geisinger is among the nation’s leading providers of value-based care, serving 1.2 million people in urban and rural communities across Pennsylvania. Founded in 1915 by philanthropist Abigail Geisinger, the non-profit system generates $10 billion in annual revenues across 134 care sites - including 10 hospital campuses, and Geisinger Health Plan, with 600,000 members in commercial and government plans. The Geisinger College of Health Sciences educates more than 5,000 medical professionals annually and conducts more than 1,400 clinical research studies. With 26,000 employees, including 1,600 employed physicians, Geisinger is among Pennsylvania’s largest employers with an estimated economic impact of $14 billion to the state’s economy. On March 31, 2024, Geisinger became the first member of Risant Health, a new nonprofit charitable organization created to expand and accelerate value-based care across the country.  Learn more at or connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and X.

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