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The Capital Region of Denmark - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital
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Psychosocial health in people with diabetes during the first three months of the COVID-19 pandemic in Denmark

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AIMS: To analyze trajectories of psychosocial health among people with diabetes during the first three months of lockdowns and reopenings of the COVID-19 pandemic in Denmark.

METHODS: An online longitudinal survey of 2430 people with diabetes consisting of six questionnaire waves (Q1-Q6) was conducted between March 19 and June 25, 2020. Psychosocial outcomes assessed were COVID-19 worries, quality of life, feelings of social isolation, psychological distress, diabetes distress, anxiety, and general and diabetes-specific loneliness. Trajectories in psychosocial health were analyzed with linear multilevel mixed-effects models. Subgroup analyses were conducted.

RESULTS: In total, 1366 (56%) people with diabetes responded to the first questionnaire. COVID-19 worries, feelings of social isolation, psychological distress, anxiety and general loneliness had all improved at Q6 compared to Q1 (p < 0.001). In general, improvements in psychosocial health started after the first reopening phase (April 15); however, general loneliness increased up to the first reopening phase (p ≤  0.001) before decreasing, and quality of life decreased up to the first reopening phase (p = 0.002), with no improvements to follow. Subgroup analyses revealed that women had larger decreases in feelings of social isolation (p < 0.001) and in psychological distress (p = 0.035) and increases in quality of life (p < 0.001), between Q1 and Q6, compared to men.

CONCLUSIONS: Psychosocial health in people with diabetes improved following reopening of society. However, increases in loneliness and decreases in quality of life during lockdown indicates a potential need to mitigate the acute effects of such policies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107858
JournalJournal of Diabetes and its Complications
Volume35
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)107858
ISSN1056-8727
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2021

    Research areas

  • COVID-19, Diabetes mellitus, Loneliness, Psychosocial factors, Quality of life, Social isolation

ID: 62377547