Numeracy skill linked to diabetes

LOW numeracy skills are associated with poor glycaemic control in people with type 1 diabetes, potentially impacting on patients’ ability to manage their disease, researchers say.

In a UK study, researchers studied the numeracy skills expected of a 14- to 16-year-old with glycaemic control in 112 patients who had type 1 diabetes for an average of 20 years.

They found that the HbA1c of those with numeracy skills expected at this age level or greater was 8.4% compared with 9.2% in those with lesser numeracy.

Although higher socioeconomic status was associated with lower HbA1c, the difference in numeracy ability remained after adjusting for diabetes duration, education and demographic factors.

Literacy skills were not associated with HbA1c.

The authors said the numeracy skills expected of a typical teenager were required to implement glucose management strategies.

“The assessment of numeracy skills of