Alliance to Reduce Disparities in Diabetes

Improving Diabetes Care and Outcomes on the South Side of Chicago

Visit the Improving Diabetes Care and Outcomes on the South Side of Chicago web site for additional information about this dynamic project.


The University of Chicago has developed this program to improve the quality of care and outcomes of people with diabetes on the South Side of Chicago. This program is deeply dedicated to addressing the diabetes disparities on the South Side of Chicago. Many South Side residents are African-American and have significant socioeconomic challenges. This program seeks to coordinate community clinics, an academic medical center and community-based organizations to provide comprehensive diabetes management and care in a sustainable way.


  • Improve diabetes care and outcomes for people living with diabetes in the predominantly African-American South Side of Chicago
  • Implement a collaborative model program in six clinics
  • Redesign health center systems to increase care coordination
  • Empower patients to take control of their diabetes
  • Improve patient-provider communication
  • Strengthen a coalition comprised of the University of Chicago, safety net health centers and community-based organizations on Chicago’s South Side


  • Provide culturally tailored education in diabetes and shared decision-making to empower them to communicate effectively with their health care providers and become active participants in their own health care.
  • Provide cultural competency training and behavioral change education to health care providers to teach them to communicate effectively with their patients and facilitate lifestyle improvements.
  • Build strong collaborations with community organizations to support healthy living with diabetes on the South Side of Chicago.
  • Redesign diabetes management at the clinics to include care coordination, nurse care management and enhanced community partnerships as part of a quality improvement collaborative of our six clinics.


  • The results from the first 2 cohorts of the patient education program demonstrate that participants improve their self-efficacy, self-care behaviors, and diabetes control including significant decreases in HbA1C.
  • Great increases in the number of physicians receiving cultural awareness training and the number of adults with type 2 diabetes enrolled in diabetes self-management education.
  • A useful website with information for patients, community members, and other researchers has been launched:
  • New relationships strengthened with community partners like the K.L.E.O. Community Family Life Center to increase positive impact on the surrounding community and open doors to more potential partners.
  • Quality Improvement projects are shifting towards care coordination, team-based care, and patient-centered solutions, reflecting an underlying culture shift taking place within each team and their organizations.
  • Continuing medical education (CME) series titled the “Patient Centered Communication Workshop” for providers consisting of four sessions relating to cultural awareness, motivational interviewing, shared decision-making and treatment tailoring were pilot-tested.

Additional Information

For more information on Improving Diabetes Care and Outcomes on the South Side of Chicago, please visit the project web site or contact project managers Tonya Roberson or Anna Goddu