Author Interviews, Diabetes, JAMA, Primary Care / 01.02.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_47260" align="alignleft" width="106"]Diane M. Gibson, Ph.D. Executive Director – New York Federal Statistical Research Data Center, Baruch RDC Associate Professor – Marxe School of Public and International Affairs, Baruch College - CUNY Dr. Gibson[/caption] Diane M. Gibson, Ph.D. Executive Director – New York Federal Statistical Research Data Center, Baruch RDC Associate Professor – Marxe School of Public and International Affairs, Baruch College - CUNY MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Prior studies have found that screening for diabetic retinopathy in primary care settings using telemedicine increased screening rates among individuals with diabetes and among subgroups of individuals with diabetes who are at high risk of missing recommended eye exams.  In a previous paper I looked at how often U.S. adults with diabetes visited primary care and eye care providers for recommended diabetes preventive care services using a sample from the 2007-2013 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey.  I found that while visits to eye care providers were often skipped, most adults with diabetes did visit primary care physicians.  I argued that these findings suggest that screening for diabetic retinopathy in primary care settings using telemedicine has the potential to fulfill unmet needs and reach most U.S. adults with diabetes. My brief report in JAMA Ophthalmology examines patterns of eye examination receipt and visits to primary care physicians among U.S. adults with diabetes using a sample from the 2016 National Health Interview Survey.  The report pays particular attention to individuals who are at high-risk of missing recommended eye exams. The study found that 87.7% of the sample of adults with diabetes visited a primary care physician in the past year and that, except for the uninsured subgroup, more than 78% of each high-risk subgroup visited a primary care provider in the past year.