Understanding the Impact of Health Inequities
ADCES believes that high quality diabetes care and education should be available to every individual, in all communities. Unfortunately, individuals from some racial and ethnic groups are at a higher risk for diabetes and the complications of diabetes. We’ve seen the impact of those systemic social and health inequities with COVID-19 across our country, and we see them every day with prediabetes and diabetes in our own communities.
To improve health outcomes for people with prediabetes, diabetes and cardiometabolic diseases, we must work to address the disproportional burden of disease health inequities place on communities of color. Fortunately, many ADCES members are making ADCES’ vision of optimal health and quality of life a reality for these communities. Listen and learn from the stories below to see how you can begin addressing health inequities in your own area.
Learning More About Health Disparities
Health disparities are differences in health status between racial, ethnic, geographic, and socio-economic groups. When we look at the prevalence of type 2 diabetes, we see that some ethnic and racial groups such as American Indians and Alaska Natives, Non-Hispanic African Americans, and people of Hispanic origin of all races are more likely to have diabetes. People with lower levels of education, a key indicator of socioeconomic status, are also at higher risk. Prevalence of type 2 diabetes is higher in rural areas than in urban communities.
These disparities affect how quickly someone progresses from prediabetes to type 2 diabetes, their access to diabetes prevention and diabetes self-management education services, and the care they receive after diagnosis. To learn more about health inequities, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Diabetes Health Disparities website.
By preventing or delaying more cases of type 2 diabetes, we can address these health inequities. Access resources for community members at highest risk for type 2 diabetes. Find CDC-recognized lifestyle change programs for people with prediabetes. And learn how ADCES is advancing health equity through diabetes prevention.
Supporting Racial and Ethnic Equity Through Diabetes Care and Education
In the fight for health equity, many health systems may focus on disparities caused by poverty, education, disabilities and other social determinants of health without considering racist structures, policies, practices and norms that exclude people of color from equitable access to health services.
By acknowledging and actively working to dismantle racist systems that uphold these inequities, you help alleviate the disproportionate burden of chronic illness on communities of color and ensure that the healthcare system serves everyone. Explore the following resources to better identify your own biases and actively work to bring diabetes care and prevention to the individuals and communities that need it.
Additional Reading from ADCES Journals
ADCES members get access to more content. Join and get access to all ADCES member benefits, including free subscriptions to The Science of Diabetes Self-Management and Care journal and ADCES in Practice magazine.
Network With Other Dedicated Diabetes Care and Education Specialists
The Cultural Diversity Community of Interest was created by dedicated ADCES members who seek to improve the quality of life for diverse populations living with diabetes, and to increase cultural awareness and support for healthcare professionals who provide diabetes care to those populations. Connect with these members, ask questions and get the latest updates from this group at ADCESconnect.org.
ADCES offers a variety of certificates and assessment-based learning programs to suit individuals or entire practice teams. Complete certificate programs on topics from diabetes prevention, to telehealth and CGM. Many certificates offer digital badges upon completion. View all certificate programs.