Treatment and Monitoring of Adults with Diagnosed Diabetes by Race/Ethnicity, 2015-2016

Diabetes is a chronic condition that requires ongoing treatment and monitoring to reduce morbidity and mortality. It is associated with various comorbidities including heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, kidney disease, and blindness as well as lost productivity, and increased financial burden. The American Diabetes Association’s (ADA) Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes contains a comprehensive set of recommendations for screening, diagnosis, and therapeutic actions that are likely to favorably affect health outcomes for patients with diabetes. Based on data collected in the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey-Household Component (MEPS-HC) and its supplemental Diabetes Care Survey (DCS), this Statistical Brief first presents estimates of the prevalence of reported diagnoses of diabetes for adults age 18 and older by race/ethnicity, and then focuses on differences among racial/ethnic groups in treatment and monitoring of the condition. The treatment methods considered include insulin injection, oral medications, and diet modification. Monitoring services by a health professional include blood cholesterol check, checking of feet for sores or irritations, eye exam with dilation, and blood check for hemoglobin A1C. Understanding differences in diabetic patients’ receipt of these treatment and services by race/ethnicity may be helpful in directing resources for managing diabetes among diverse groups. The average annual estimates presented in this Brief are for the civilian noninstitutionalized adult population (i.e., 18 and older) and are derived from pooled data from the 2015 and 2016 MEPS-HC/DCS. The racial/ethnic distribution of this population during the 2015-16 period was: white, non-Hispanic (63.5 percent); Hispanic (15.8 percent); black, non-Hispanic (11.8 percent); Asian, non-Hispanic (5.8 percent), and other/multiple races, non-Hispanic (3.0 percent). In this report, the non-Hispanic groups will be referred to as simply white, black, and Asian. Although included in the overall total (i.e., All), the “other/multiple races, non-Hispanic” category is not shown separately in the figures due to small sample sizes or failure to meet minimum precision requirements. Only racial/ethnic differences in estimates that are statistically significant at the 0.05 level or better are noted in the text.

Source: Statistical Brief (Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (US)) [Internet]. Rockville (MD): Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (US); 2001-.STATISTICAL BRIEF #518. 2018 Dec.