Barriers to Type 2 Diabetes Management Among Older Adult Haitian Immigrants

Cherlie Magny-Normilus, Robin Whittemore, Deborah J. Wexler, Jefferey L. Schnipper, Marcella Nunez-Smith, Mei R. Fu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: The purpose of this study was to describe the experiences of older adult Haitian immigrants in managing type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Methods: A descriptive qualitative approach using semistructured interviews was conducted with 20 older adult Haitian immigrants with T2DM. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and categorized using NVivo. An iterative descriptive data analysis method was used to examine the data, compare codes, challenge interpretations, and develop themes inductively. Results: Older adult Haitian immigrants reported that T2DM affected every aspect of their lives. Financial hardship and social isolation were described as the major barriers to T2DM management, which forced them to choose between basic needs and health care, and at times, they had to forgo medications or avoid seeking medical care. They recognized that creating and maintaining good community support was the key to self-management of T2DM. Conclusions: Financial hardship and social isolation have a tremendous impact on the ability of older Haitian immigrants to manage T2DM effectively. It is challenging to modify these barriers through individual efforts, and clinical, research, and public efforts may be necessary to address these concerns.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)382-390
Number of pages9
JournalScience of Diabetes Self-Management and Care
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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