Document Type

Policy Brief

Publication Date



Diabetic Care, Diabetes and Mental Health


Diabetes and mental health conditions co-occur frequently in the United States1,2 and each is a risk factor for the other.3,4 Moreover, individuals with comorbid diabetes and psychiatric disorders are at greater risk for poor health outcomes than the general population or than their peers with diabetes.5,6 One step toward understanding and potentially reducing the health disparities faced by people with comorbid diabetes and mental health conditions is to monitor their receipt of diabetic preventive services, to ensure that these services conform to established standards.7 Previous investigations on this topic have indicated that after controlling for covariates of diabetes and psychiatric status, the presence of any mental health condition was associated with decreased quality of diabetic care, as measured by patients’ appropriate use of preventive services.8,9 Existing research does not clarify how rural residence and related factors might be connected to preventive care use among diabetic people with mental health needs.