Type 2 Diabetes, Food Insecurity, Social Determinants of Health, Community Food Resource Referral


Medicine and Health Sciences



Approximately 50 million people in the United States are food insecure, which makes food insecurity (FI) one of the country’s most prevalent health issues. Food insecurity has been shown to be a contributing factor to uncontrolled Type 2 Diabetes (T2D), which affects about 34.1 million adults in the United States. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of integration of an electronic social determinants of health screening and community referral process for adult patients with T2D and FI. The aim was to determine if Hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) levels are reduced in adult patients with T2D by improved access to food. The study site was a Federally Qualified Health Center that serves a large population of Hispanic patients. All adult patients over the age of 18 years who had a diagnosis of T2D and presented to the clinic for a routine office visit were screened for FI using the Protocol for Responding to and Assessing Patients’ Assets, Risks, and Experiences risk assessment tool. Patients who screened positive for FI were referred to community food resources via the Community Resource Network. At the end of the 12-week study period, data regarding utilization of resources and HbA1c levels were obtained. A total of 42 patients with T2D identified as having FI participated in the study, and all of them (100%) were referred to a community food resource. Of those 42 patients, 40 (95%) completed the follow-up questionnaire, and 39 (97%) of the respondents reported utilizing the food resources. There was a statistically significant difference in the pre- and post-intervention HbA1c levels (M = 0.45, SD = 0.68) (t(41) = 4.32, p < 0.001, 95% CI = 0.24 – 0.66).


Received Permission from Institutional Review Board, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa