Diabetes screening in pregnancy failing women in rural Western Australia: An audit of oral glucose tolerance test completion rates

Andrew Kirke, David Atkinson, Sarah Moore, Kylie Sterry, Sally Singleton, Carly Roxburgh, Kate Parrish, Cindy Porter, Julia Marley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To quantify screening rate for gestational diabetes mellitus and completion of oral glucose tolerance test in rural and remote Western Australia. Design and participants: Retrospective audit of 551 antenatal records from women of 16 years and older without pre-existing diabetes and with singleton pregnancies delivered in 2013. Main outcome measures: Number of women recorded screened for gestational diabetes mellitus in second or third trimester using oral glucose tolerance test or other tests; gestational diabetes mellitus rate. Results: Only 278 (50.5%) women were screened with oral glucose tolerance test; 113 (20.5%) had no record of any screening related to gestational diabetes mellitus. In a nested mixed-effects logistic regression model, women with a previous gestational diabetes mellitus diagnosis, two or more risk factors (excluding ethnicity) or high-risk gestational diabetes mellitus ethnicity other than Australian Aboriginal were more likely to be screened, while Australian Aboriginal women were less likely to be screened with oral glucose tolerance test. Clinicians reported patient and clinician factors and logistical difficulties as reasons for the oral glucose tolerance test not being completed at their site. Of those screened with oral glucose tolerance test, a high rate of gestational diabetes mellitus was diagnosed (14.7% versus Western Australia state-wide average of 7.4%). Conclusion: Adherence to oral glucose tolerance test screening in rural Western Australia is inadequate for effective screening for gestational diabetes mellitus. Screening was not acceptable or available for a significant proportion of women at risk. Efforts to improve oral glucose tolerance test adherence and exploration of alternative gestational diabetes mellitus screening strategies are required. © 2019 National Rural Health Alliance Ltd.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)64-69
Number of pages6
JournalThe Australian Journal of Rural Health
Issue number1
Early online date29 Jan 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2019


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