Send to

Choose Destination
Fam Med. 2001 Feb;33(2):115-9.

The lack of screening for diabetic nephropathy: evidence from a privately insured population.

Author information

Department of Family Medicine, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston 29425, USA.



We examined the performance of screening tests for diabetic nephropathy in a population of privately insured individuals.


Administrative data from a large private health plan were analyzed. Continuously insured persons with diabetes (ages 30-62) with > or = one office visit during the study year (July 1995 to June 1996) were included (n = 4,758). Outcome variables included a urinalysis for protein and a test for microalbuminuria. The likelihood of test performance according to age, gender, insurance plan type, total office visits, diabetes office visits, and specialty of predominant physician was examined both in bivariate analyses and a logistic regression.


Among the 4,623 patients without evidence of nephropathy, only 16.5% had a urinalysis test conducted sometime in the year. All individuals (2.1% of sample) who received a microalbuminuria test also received a urinalysis. Individuals with indemnity or PPO plans were more likely to be screened than individuals in point-of-service plans. Patients with more visits and more diabetes visits were more likely to be screened. In the regression with family practice as the reference category, general internists were the only physician specialty more likely to have screened patients.


The majority of patients with diabetes mellitus do not receive annual screening for microalbuminuria or urinary protein.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center