Evaluating the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on patient management of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus




Wildish, Shelby


0000-0002-7361-0059 (Wildish, Shelby)

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Background: On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), as a global pandemic. As a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic, many countries implemented "lockdown" or quarantining regulations, to help maintain the virus spread. These declarations resulted in extended periods at home for patients, which is known to have undesirable consequences of physical inactivity, weight gain and increased risks of many pathologies such as Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM). Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus is the seventh leading cause of death in the United States, and is a known risk factor for severe outcomes in COVID-19 patients. Texas has an increased prevalence of T2DM as compared to the US, with racial minorities, elderly and undereducated patients being disproportionately impacted by the condition. Purpose: This paper aims to explore the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the management of T2DM in patients in underserved communities who utilize free clinics for longitudinal primary care. Focus: Specifically, we intend to compare patient's Hemoglobin A1C (HbA1c), Weight and Body Mass Index (BMI) pre- vs. post-COVID-19 pandemic to investigate whether the COVID-19 pandemic affected the patient's management of T2DM.