Abdul Mateen Afa’Addin Mohidin1, Pui Lin Chong2, Shyh Poh Teo3, Ihsan Nazurah Zulkipli4

1Institute of Health Sciences, University Brunei Darussalam, Brunei Darussalam,

2Diabetes & Endocrinology Unit, Department of Internal Medicine, RIPAS Hospital, and

3Geriatrics & Palliative Unit, Department of Internal Medicine; RIPAS Hospital, Jalan Putera Al-Muhtadee Billah, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam

4Faculty of Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah, Institute of Health Sciences, University Brunei Darussalam, Brunei Darussalam.  



Introduction: Health literacy in diabetes is related to patients’ understanding of diabetes and self-care skills necessary in the management of diabetes. By enhancing health literacy, better glycaemic control may be achieved which could translate to improved diabetes outcomes. The study objectives were to investigate the knowledge level of patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes on their condition, and to evaluate the association between health literacy and glycemic control. Methods:  Patients attending Diabetes Outpatient Clinic at Raja Isteri Pengiran Anak Saleha Hospital were recruited. The data collection tool consisted of demographic information, the Michigan Diabetes Knowledge Test, a validated self-administered questionnaire to test respondents’ knowledge of their condition, and the level of glycaemic control (measured as HbA1c). Quantitative data were analysed using Statistical Packages for Social Sciences version 23.0. Results: One hundred and eighteen patients participated in the study. The majority (69.5%) of respondents had inadequate diabetes knowledge level. Chi-square tests revealed patients’ education level (χ 2=8.646, P=0.013) and monthly income (χ 2=12.686, P=0.02) were significantly associated with their diabetes knowledge level. No association was found between diabetes knowledge level and glycemic control. Conclusion: Educational programmes are warranted to improve health literacy and knowledge of diabetes among patients attending the Diabetes Outpatient Clinic. The effectiveness of patient education interventions should be assessed to ensure translation to clinical outcomes such as glycaemic control.


Keywords: Brunei, Diabetes Mellitus, Health literacy, Outpatients, Patient Education


Corresponding author: Shyh Poh Teo, Consultant Geriatrician and Physician, Geriatrics and Palliative Unit, Department of Internal Medicine, Jalan Putera Al-Muhtadee Billah, Bandar Seri Begawan BE1518, Brunei Darussalam.


Phone: +6722242424; Fax: +6732242690


Brunei Int Med J. 2020;16:36-41