(HealthDay)—If you have diabetes and live in rural America, the closest specialist may be hours away. But new research shows that effective help may be as close as your phone.

The study found that a six-month telehealth program led to a significant drop in . Participants had an average A1C level of 9.25% at the study’s start and an average of 7.89% at the end. That benefit was maintained a year after the study ended.

A1C tests estimate average blood sugar levels over two to three months. Targets are individualized, but the goal for most adults is