Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Public Health

First Advisor

Shannon Self-Brown

Second Advisor

Xuanping Zhang

Third Advisor

Angela Snyder


Background: Diabetes is one of the most common and pernicious chronic illnesses. Guidelines recommend visiting a physician for the secondary prevention of complications. Many risk factors and barriers exist, which hinder healthcare usage. Males are at higher risk for many health issues, including diabetes, yet research shows that women are more likely to receive preventive services. The purpose of this study is to examine whether putative risk factors and barriers to care are diabetes-specific and whether their impact varies by gender.

Methods: The Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System was used to assess disparities between genders related to diabetes-specific care. In addition, logistic regression was used to determine whether barriers to healthcare, such as education, lack of health insurance, and out-of-pocket-costs, were also diabetes-specific; and did they significantly vary by gender.

Results: Analyses demonstrated that males were less likely to visit the physician for their diabetes care. Results indicated that while there were main effects for the additional barriers, they did not vary by gender. Within-groups analyses showed that the odds of not receiving adequate care for those with a lack of insurance were greater for males.

Conclusion: Results demonstrated that in many instances, both gender and the chosen barriers increased the odds that individuals would not receive the optimum level of care, although not varying by gender. The lack of an insurance plan was shown to reduce the likelihood that males would receive the appropriate care. These findings potentially aid in the development of more gender-specific interventions and policies.