Cost and perceived need barriers to diabetes eye care

Cost and perceived need barriers to diabetes eye care

(HealthDay)—Cost, lack of insurance, and no need are the most commonly cited reasons why adults with diabetes do not seek annual eye care, according to a study published online Sept. 5 in Diabetes Care.

Chiu-Fang Chou, Dr.P.H., from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, and colleagues utilized data from the multi-state 2006 to 2010 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System to identify respondents who had not sought eye care in the previous 12 months. The authors examined the reasons given for skipping recommended vision examinations.

The researchers found that non-adherence to recommended annual eye examinations was 23.5 percent among adults diagnosed with diabetes. "No need" and "cost or lack of insurance" were the most commonly reported reasons for not receiving eye care in the preceding 12 months (39.7 and 32.3 percent, respectively). Adults aged 40 to 64 years were more likely than those aged 65 years and older (relative risk ratios [RRR], 2.79) and women were more likely than men (RRR, 2.33) to report "cost or lack of insurance" as their main reason, even after adjusting for covariates. Younger people (aged 40 to 64 years) were less likely than those over age 65 years to report "no need" (RRR, 0.51) as their main reason.

"Addressing concerns about 'cost or lack of insurance' for adults under 65 years and 'no perceived need' among those 65 years and older could help improve eye care service utilization among people with ," the authors write.

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