Determinants of Diabetes Awareness Among Hispanic/Latino Adults in the U.S., 2005-2018

Diabetes Care. 2024 Jun 11:dc240520. doi: 10.2337/dc24-0520. Online ahead of print.


Objective: Despite improvements in screening, Hispanics/Latinos bear a disproportionate burden of undiagnosed diabetes in the U.S. Identifying who is at risk within this large and diverse population is important for targeting interventions. In this study, we sought to characterize risk factors for undiagnosed diabetes among Hispanics/Latinos. We also investigated determinants among insured adults to explore barriers for those with access to care.

Research design and methods: We used data from 1,883 Hispanic/Latino adults aged ≥20 years from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (2005-2018). Sequential multivariable logistic regression models were used to examine a range of social, health care, and individual-level determinants of undiagnosed diabetes (defined as having elevated fasting plasma glucose ≥126 mg/dL or HbA1c ≥6.5% (48 mmol/mol) in participants self-reporting as not having diabetes) in the overall sample and among those with health insurance (n = 1,401).

Results: Younger age (20-44 years), male sex, and having immigrated (compared with being U.S. born), but not socioeconomic factors, were significantly associated with a higher odds of undiagnosed diabetes compared with being diagnosed. These estimates were attenuated after adjusting for health care utilization variables. In fully adjusted models, having no health care visits in the past year, reporting no family history of diabetes, and having better self-reported health were the predominant risk factors for undiagnosed diabetes in the overall sample and among insured Hispanic/Latino adults.

Conclusions: Our findings highlight the importance of reaching younger, male, and immigrant Hispanic/Latino adults and addressing barriers to health care utilization, even among insured adults, to improve diabetes awareness.