The Columbia University Informatics for Diabetes Education and Telemedicine (IDEATel) Project is a four-year demonstration project funded by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services with the overall goals of evaluating the feasibility, acceptability, effectiveness, and cost-effectiveness of telemedicine in the management of older patients with diabetes. The study is designed as a randomized controlled trial and is being conducted by a state-wide consortium in New York. Eligibility requires that participants have diabetes, are Medicare beneficiaries, and reside in federally designated medically underserved areas. A total of 1,500 participants will be randomized, half in New York City and half in other areas of the state. Intervention participants receive a home telemedicine unit that provides synchronous videoconferencing with a project-based nurse, electronic transmission of home fingerstick glucose and blood pressure data, and Web access to a project Web site. End points include glycosylated hemoglobin, blood pressure, and lipid levels; patient satisfaction; health care service utilization; and costs. The project is intended to provide data to help inform regulatory and reimbursement policies for electronically delivered health care services.