Diabetes affects over 34 million Americans, is associated with billions of dollars in health expenditures and lost productivity, and Southeastern states are disproportionately impacted. Robust evidence has shown that lifestyle interventions in people at high risk for diabetes and comprehensive management of cardio-metabolic risk factors like glucose, blood pressure, and lipids can delay the onset of diabetes and its complications. However, realizing the benefits of this robust evidence has been hampered by low adoption of lifestyle interventions to prevent diabetes, and there are still large gaps in achievement of care goals for those with diabetes and differences in complications and morbidity, especially among young adults, minority, and socioeconomically disadvantaged groups. To close these gaps and disparities, we need a combination of health system, clinician, community, and individual implementation strategies that promote equitable adoption and effectiveness, and are feasible and scalable to do in the real-world. Translational research, which includes implementation science, health services research, community-engaged participatory research, and health system and policy evaluations can help demonstrate what works in real-life clinical and community settings and what adaptations and processes are required to embed these interventions into routine practice, programs, and policy.
Established in 2016 as a collaboration of Emory University, Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM), and the Georgia Institute of Technology (GT), the Georgia Center for Diabetes Translation Research (GCDTR) embarked on promoting translation research to generate and disseminate knowledge to influence practice and policy. The GCDTR’s focus is on advancing the science regarding the reach, effectiveness, adoption, and sustainability of technological, behavioral, pharmacological diabetes prevention and management advances. To do this, GCDTR leverages design and evaluation expertise; careful application of socioecological models, behavioral sciences, and community-engaged participatory research that can improve engagement with clinical, policy, and community stakeholders; and established and emerging technologies to advance translation research for health equity.
GCDTR is one of seven NIDDK-funded Centers for Diabetes Translation Research (CDTR). To learn more about CDTRs supporting and enhancing type 2 translation research, click here.