Eye care utilization among diabetics in the South African National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (SANHANES-1): a cross-sectional study

SOURCE: BMC Research Notes
OUTPUT TYPE: Journal Article
TITLE AUTHOR(S): K.O.Akuffo, A.K.Asare, R.Sewpaul, N.Dukhi, D.B.Kumah, E.Agyei-Manu, E.K.Addo, P.Reddy
DEPARTMENT: Public Health, Societies and Belonging (HSC)
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 11590
HANDLE: 20.500.11910/15416
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11910/15416

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Diabetes is a chronic disease of uncontrolled blood sugar levels. People with diabetes are at an increased risk of developing visual impairment and other diabetes-related visual complications. The study aims to determine the eyecare utilization pattern and its associated determinants among diabetics in the South African National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (SANHANES-1). The mean age of participants was 56.2 years and 66.6% were females. The prevalence of eyecare utilization among participants was 49.0% and this differed significantly by age groups (p = 0.024) and the number of years since diabetes diagnosis (p < 0.001). After statistical adjustments, older age (55-64 years OR = 4.18, p = 0.003 and > 65 years OR = 4.78, p = 0.002), having health insurance (OR = 6.32, p = 0.002), and having had diabetes for 6???10 years (OR = 4.23, p = 0.005) were significantly associated with eye care utilization. About half of people diagnosed with diabetes in South Africa have had an eye examination since diabetes diagnosis, which is disturbingly low given the impact of diabetes complications on eye health. Government policies must be directed at ensuring access to affordable health insurance and eye health education on diabetes.