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Testing Different Messaging Approaches to Increase Activation of a HealthyFood Benefit in Adults With Diabetes

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT02462057
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : June 3, 2015
Results First Posted : November 9, 2018
Last Update Posted : November 9, 2018
Discovery Health
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Anjali Gopalan, University of Pennsylvania

Brief Summary:
The Vitality HealthyFood benefit is a three-tiered incentive program designed to encourage healthier food choices amongst members of Discovery Health's Vitality program. Once enrolled in the benefit, participating members can receive 10%, 15%, or 25% cash-back on the healthy foods they purchase at selected grocers. And, while overall enrollment in the program is high, there is particular interest in increasing enrollment in the benefit amongst Vitality members with diabetes. One presumed barrier to enrollment in the benefit amongst members with diabetes is a misperception of the particular relevance of the benefit and healthier food choices for their personal health. Improved messaging regarding the HealthyFood benefit and its particular salience for individuals with diabetes may be an effective means of increasing activation of the benefit in this population. The proposed study will be a collaboration between Discovery Health/Vitality and researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. In the proposed RCT, Vitality members with diabetes will be randomised to different types of messages regarding the HealthyFood benefit. The investigators will then compare the effectiveness of these different messaging strategies at increasing activation of the HealthyFood benefit amongst Vitality members with diabetes.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Diabetes Diet Incentives Messaging Other: Email message regarding the HealthyFood benefit Not Applicable

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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Actual Enrollment : 5467 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Health Services Research
Official Title: Testing the Effectiveness of Different Messaging Approaches to Increase Activation of a HealthyFood Benefit Amongst Individuals With Diabetes: A Randomised, Controlled Trial
Study Start Date : June 2015
Actual Primary Completion Date : July 2015
Actual Study Completion Date : July 2015

Arm Intervention/treatment
No Intervention: Control Arm
This arm will represent current practice. This group will receive no contact from the research team. They may receive information regarding the benefit from the Vitality marketing team during the intervention period and can enroll in the benefit at any time during the study period.
Active Comparator: Diabetes-specific
This group will receive a message which simply cites the two specific benefits of the eating more healthy foods for individuals with diabetes. This message contains a link to start the enrolment process.
Other: Email message regarding the HealthyFood benefit
Active Comparator: Experience of another member
This group will receive a message that includes a quote from the perspective of a Vitality member with diabetes who uses the HealthyFood benefit. Given the need to standardise message content across study arms, the quote was written by the study team and not an actual member. The quote emphasizes the positive impact the benefit has had for the member—both the financial benefit, as well as the two specific diabetes health benefits.
Other: Email message regarding the HealthyFood benefit
Active Comparator: Input from a diabetes expert
This group will receive a message that includes a quote from a South African physician who specializes in diabetes. The quote emphasises the financial benefit and the two specific diabetes health benefits of the HealthyFood program included in the other messages. It concludes with the doctor's recommendation of the benefit for all individuals with diabetes.
Other: Email message regarding the HealthyFood benefit
Active Comparator: Enhanced active choice

This group will receive a message whose first portion is identical to those in the diabetes-specific message group. The second portion of the message differs in that instead of just asking recipients to click on the provided link if interested, the message asks people to choose and click on one of following possible responses:

  1. Yes! I want to active the HealthyFood benefit and get up to 25% cash back on the healthy food I buy at Pick n Pay or Woolworths
  2. No, I'd prefer not to activate and continue paying full price for my healthy food purchases
Other: Email message regarding the HealthyFood benefit

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Enrollment in 10% Level of Benefit [ Time Frame: One month from initial emailed messages ]
    Rates of enrolment in 10% cash-back level (the most basic level, requires online activation only) of the HealthyFood Benefit amongst members with diabetes

Information from the National Library of Medicine

Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contacts provided below. For general information, Learn About Clinical Studies.

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Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  1. Adults over age 18
  2. Vitality health members who have not yet enrolled in the Vitality HealthyFood benefit
  3. Diagnosis of type 2 diabetes (based on registration for chronic benefits for type 2 diabetes)
  4. Have registered on to Discovery Health/Vitality website in the past (marker of Internet access and availability of email address)

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Anyone who does not meet above criteria

Publications automatically indexed to this study by Identifier (NCT Number):
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Responsible Party: Anjali Gopalan, VA Advanced Fellow, Philadelphia VA Medical Center, University of Pennsylvania Identifier: NCT02462057     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 821895
First Posted: June 3, 2015    Key Record Dates
Results First Posted: November 9, 2018
Last Update Posted: November 9, 2018
Last Verified: April 2018
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Diabetes Mellitus
Glucose Metabolism Disorders
Metabolic Diseases
Endocrine System Diseases