An e-Learning Platform to Enhance Diabetes Care for Patients and Families Across British Columbia


BC Children’s Hospital Diabetes Team

The Digital Lab

Type of work

Software & Web
Media & Animation
Digital Learning

Pediatric Diabetes Management Requires Education

Diabetes is a chronic metabolic disease that is very common. In patients with diabetes, the hormone insulin isn’t functioning normally, causing blood glucose levels to rise which damages the body. As childhood and adolescence are periods of immense mental and psychological changes, the additional challenge of dealing with diabetes is extremely challenging. As a result, adolescents with diabetes more commonly have psychological disorders such as anxiety. Diabetes also puts strain on family relationships which can compromise patients' treatment. Education is important to managing diabetes, and while educational programs do exist, they are primarily paper-based and in-person with limited support after completion. To improve health outcomes no matter location or socioeconomic status, the Digital Lab and BC Children’s Hospital Diabetes team developed LearnDiabetes.

Research & Design

Creating a Diabetes Education e-Learning Platform

While currently standard diabetes education at BC Children’s Hospital (BCCH) is a 3-day onsite course provided by diabetes nurse educators, this program is not accessible and does not provide ongoing support. The Digital Lab and BCCH Diabetes Team partnered to develop an online e-Learning center, LearnDiabetes, that could supplement this education and provide a personalized learning experience to users.

The site is designed for both children and their families, with usability and personalization being at the center of the design. The site boasts 19 unique learning modules, and over 220 minutes of customized video and digital animated content that caters to users of all ages, and to children specifically. LearnDiabetes personalizes the user experience with progress tracking, and smart recommendations based on their personal user account, module progress and recommendations from healthcare professionals. To ensure that LearnDiabetes can be managed with ease the site was fitted with a custom content management system for seamless content updates to ensure clinical relevance is maintained. Additionally, to allow the LearnDiabetes team to improve user experience and engagement the site was fit with Google Analytics integrations to better understand user interactions. Overall, LearnDiabetes maintains the high quality of in-person diabetes education, while drastically increasing accessibility and personalizing the user experience.

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Effective, Accessible and Personalized Diabetes Education

The LearnDiabetes platform has changed how diabetes education can be provided to pediatric patients and their families. This e-Learning center offers a personalized experience for users from the point of diagnosis until long after they have returned home from the hospital. The content was carefully designed to support the education of pediatric patients and their families and is delivered in text, animated and video content to suit each user's unique learning style. Through reducing barriers to accessibility and supporting patients and their families with high-quality e-Learning content, LearnDiabetes improves diabetes management across British Columbia.