Objectives This study evaluated whether a range of demographic, social and geographic factors had an influence on glycaemic control longitudinally after an initial diagnosis of diabetes. Design, setting and participants We used the US Veterans Administration Diabetes Risk national cohort to track glycaemic control among patients 20–79-year old with a new diagnosis of type 2 diabetes. Primary outcome and methods We modelled associations between glycaemic control at follow-up clinical assessments and geographic factors including neighbourhood race/ethnicity, socioeconomic, land use and food environment measures. We also adjusted for individual demographics, comorbidities, haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) at diagnosis and duration of follow-up. These factors were analysed within strata of community type: high-density urban, low-density urban, suburban/small town and rural areas. Results We analysed 246 079 Veterans who developed a new type 2 diabetes diagnosis in 2008–2018 and had at least 2 years of follow-up data available. Across all community types, we found that lower baseline HbA1c and female sex were strongly associated with a higher likelihood of within-range HbA1c at followup. Surprisingly, patients who were older or had more documented comorbidities were more likely to have within-range follow-up HbA1c results. While there was variation by community type, none of the geographic measures analysed consistently demonstrated significant associations with glycaemic control across all community types.
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