Management of Depression for patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus in Australia

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Boulat Marcel
Cheung Kelvin
Ha Francis
Jitpiriyaroj Sonia
Lee Jonathan
Lee Kieran
Lim Edward
Mcmaster Christopher
Rea Stephanie
Russia Nelson
Tan Natalie
Tan Sean
Velasco Dannica
Voon Nicholas
Wang Shuyu
Weber Hanna


Background: The occurrence of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) co-morbidly with depression is extremely common, with diabetic patients having more than twice the risk of developing depression, and depression being a major risk factor for T2DM. In Australia, it is estimated that half of T2DM patients currently have depression, and this prevalence is much higher than the 6.2% seen in the general population (aged  6-85).

Objective: To explore the relationship between T2DM and depression, investigate management options that may reduce the risk of depression, and ways to increase awareness about these non-communicable diseases.

Methods: Data was examined from the 20   Diabetes-MILES study, a postal survey sent to  5,000 randomly selected adults from the National Diabetes Services Scheme database, with 3,338 respondents. It included questions regarding demographics, existing diabetic care, and the PHQ-9 questionnaire. From the dataset, we analysed the subset of respondents with T2DM (n= 962). Depression was defined as having a PHQ-9 score greater than 8. We examined factors impacting on the prevalence of depression in this population using both odds ratio methods and log odds models.

Results: Respondents who reported lower rates of receiving necessary information or teaching about managing their issues from their diabetes care team were significantly more likely to suffer from depression (OR= .89 and  .58, respectively). Similarly, lower rates of inter-appointment contact from the diabetic care team for general follow-up were associated with higher rates of depression (OR= .76). Log odds models demonstrated strongly negative linear relationships between the frequency of depression and the rates of access to information and teaching.

Conclusion: Improvements in provision of information, education and inter-appointment contact result in lower rates of depression in patients with T2DM.  This highlights the importance of access to diabetes education, information and inter-appointment contact to decrease rates of depression in T2DM patients.

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How to Cite
Marcel, B., Kelvin, C., Francis, H., Sonia, J., Jonathan, L., Kieran, L., Edward, L., Christopher, M., Stephanie, R., Nelson, R., Natalie, T., Sean, T., Dannica, V., Nicholas, V., Shuyu, W. and Hanna, W. (2013) “Management of Depression for patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus in Australia”, Journal of Asian Medical Students’ Association. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 2(3). Available at: (Accessed: 18April2021).
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