Factors affecting diabetes treatment and patient education among Latinos: Results of a preliminary study in Chicago

Rebecca Lipton*, Lee Losey, Aida L. Giachello, Maribel Corral, Mariela H. Girotti, Joel J. Mendez

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Scopus citations

Abstract

Non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) is a major health problem among Latinos, yet the quality of diabetes treatment among them has not been fully examined. Goals: A pilot study was conducted with adult diabetic patients for the purposes of describing their diabetes-related knowledge and behaviors and evaluating whether these patients were receiving effective outpatient care. Methods: Demographic data, health knowledge, and behavioral information was collected using face-to-face interviews with 101 patients diagnosed for at least 1 year at three primary care clinics. The medical record of each interviewee was abstracted for evidence that medical follow-up was being conducted with the recommended frequency. Results: Most respondents spoke only or mostly Spanish, yet 14% of these patients reported that they had received instruction about diabetes in English alone. A majority of patients exhibited a basic understanding of their disease, and more than half reported positive health behaviors within the past year. Nonetheless, 54% of Puerto Rican Americans and 26% of Mexican-Americans had been admitted to the hospital or had used the emergency room for diabetes- related conditions. Recommended medical procedures were infrequently documented in clinic records Conclusions: Diabetes education was available in Spanish, and patients appeared to have a basic knowledge of the disease process. However, recommended clinical follow-up was not uniformly provided. The large number of diabetes-related hospitalizations may be related to sub- optimal management among at least some of these patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)267-276
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Medical Systems
Volume20
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 1996

Keywords

  • Diabetes Mellitus, non-insulin-dependent
  • Hispanics
  • minorities
  • patient education
  • standards of care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Information Systems
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management

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