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PLoS One. 2015 Feb 23;10(2):e0116689. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0116689. eCollection 2015.

Inequality in diabetes-related hospital admissions in England by socioeconomic deprivation and ethnicity: facility-based cross-sectional analysis.

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Department of Global Health Policy, Graduate School of Medicine, University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo, 113-0033, Japan.



To investigate the effect of social deprivation and ethnicity on inpatient admissions due to diabetes in England.


Facility-based cross-sectional analysis.


National Health Service (NHS) trusts in England reporting inpatient admissions with better than 80% data reporting quality from 2010-2011 (355 facilities).


Non-obstetric patients over 16 years old in all NHS facilities in England. The sample size after exclusions was 5,147,859 all-cause admissions.


The relative risk of inpatient admissions and readmissions due to diabetes adjusted for confounders.


There were 445,504 diabetes-related hospital admissions in England in 2010, giving a directly (age-sex) standardized rate of 1049.0 per 100,000 population (95% confidence interval (CI): 1046.0-1052.1). The relative risk of inpatient admission in the most deprived quintile was 2.08 times higher than that of the least deprived quintile (95% CI: 2.02-2.14), and the effect of deprivation varied across ethnicities. About 30.1% of patients admitted due to diabetes were readmitted at least once due to diabetes. South Asians showed 2.62 times (95% CI: 2.51-2.74) higher admission risk. Readmission risk increased with IMD among white British but not other ethnicities. South Asians showed slightly lower risk of readmission than white British (0.86, 95% CI: 0.80-0.94).


More deprived areas had higher rates of inpatient admissions and readmissions due to diabetes. South Asian British showed higher admission risk and lower readmission risk than white British. However, there was almost no difference by ethnicity in readmission due to diabetes. Higher rates of admission among deprived people may not necessarily reflect higher prevalence, but higher admission rates in south Asian British may be explained by their higher prevalence because their lower readmission risk suggests no inequality in primary care to prevent readmission. Better interventions in poorer areas, are needed to reduce these inequalities.

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