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<jats:sec> <jats:title>Background</jats:title> <jats:p>Type 1 diabetes (T1D) requires intensive self-management (SM). An insulin pump is designed to better support personal T1D management, but at the same time, it exacerbates the complexity and requirements of SM. Research shows that people with diabetes are likely to benefit from navigating and connecting to local means of social support and resources through web-based interventions that offer flexible, innovative, and accessible SM. However, questions remain as to which behavior change mechanisms within such resources benefit patients most and how to foster engagement with and endorsement of SM interventions.</jats:p> </jats:sec> <jats:sec> <jats:title>Objective</jats:title> <jats:p>The aim of this study was to evaluate the perspectives and experiences of people with T1D using an insulin pump and specialist health care professionals (HCPs) and determine what behavior change characteristics and strategies are required to inform the optimization of an existing web-based social network (SN) intervention to support SM.</jats:p> </jats:sec> <jats:sec> <jats:title>Methods</jats:title> <jats:p>Focus groups with insulin pump users (n=19) and specialist HCPs (n=20) in 6 National Health Service (NHS) trusts across the south of England examined the barriers and enablers to incorporating and self-managing an insulin pump. An analysis was undertaken using the Behavior Change Wheel and Theoretical Domains Framework, followed by a taxonomy of behavior change techniques (BCTs) to identify the contents of and strategies for the implementation of a complex health intervention.</jats:p> </jats:sec> <jats:sec> <jats:title>Results</jats:title> <jats:p>A total of 4 themes represent the SM perspectives and experiences of stakeholders: (1) a desire for access to tailored and appropriate resources and information—the support and information required for successful SM are situational and contextual, and these vary according to time and life circumstances, and therefore, these need to be tailored and appropriate; (2) specific social support preferences—taking away isolation as well as providing shared learnings and practical tips, but limitations included the fear of judgment from others and self-pity from peers; (3) the environmental context, that is, capacity and knowledge of pump clinic HCPs—HCPs acknowledge the patient’s need for holistic support but lack confidence in providing it; and (4) professional responsibility and associated risks and dangers, whereas HCPs are fearful of the consequences of promoting non-NHS SM support, and they question whether SM support fits into their role. BCTs were identified to address these issues.</jats:p> </jats:sec> <jats:sec> <jats:title>Conclusions</jats:title> <jats:p>The use of behavioral theory and a validated implementation framework provided a comprehensive approach for systematically identifying barriers and enablers of self-managing T1D with an insulin pump. A web-based SN intervention appears to offer additional forms of SM support while complementing NHS services. However, for intervention implementation, HCPs’ apprehensions about responsibility when signposting to non-NHS SM support would need to be addressed, and opportunistic features would need to be added, through which pump users could actively engage with other people living with T1D.</jats:p> </jats:sec>

Original publication




Journal article


Journal of Medical Internet Research


JMIR Publications Inc.

Publication Date





e13980 - e13980