HealthDay News — Community-based diabetes screening in barbershops owned by black individuals is feasible and can identify undiagnosed diabetes, according to a research letter published online Jan. 27 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Marcela Osorio, from the New York University Grossman School of Medicine in New York City, and colleagues assessed a community-based approach for diabetes screening at eight barbershops owned by black individuals. A total of 895 black men without a history of diabetes were asked to participate.

The researchers found that 312 men (34.9 percent) agreed to be screened and 290 (32.4 percent) were successfully tested. Of the 583 men who refused to participate, 331 (58.6 percent) provided a reason for refusal, which included already knowing their health status or having been checked by their doctor (56.5 percent). Only one individual specifically reported not wanting to be tested in a barbershop. Of the 290 participants who were successfully tested, 9.0 and 1.0 percent had a hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) level of ≥6.5 percent and ≥7.5 percent, respectively. In addition, 28.3 percent had HbA1c of 5.7 to 6.4 percent (prediabetes). Sixteen of the 26 participants with undiagnosed diabetes were obese.

“Community-based diabetes screening in barbershops owned by black individuals may play a role in the timely diagnosis of diabetes and may help to identify black men who need appropriate care for their newly diagnosed diabetes,” the authors write.

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