Type 2 diabetes is a major public health issue particularly in the elderly. Religion may affect the Health Related Quality of Life (HRQoL) in such patients, mediated by factors such as religious coping and social support. This study aimed to investigate the impact of religiosity on medication adherence and HRQoL.
793 adults (> 65 years old, 45% females) were recruited from 4 diabetes care centers and followed for 1 year. Duke University Religion Index, Spiritual Coping Strategies, Multidimensional Perceived Social Support, Medication Adherence Report Scale, WHOQOL-BREF and Diabetes-specific Quality of Life Questionnaire Module were used for assessment, as well as HbA1c and fasting blood glucose level. Using structural equation modeling, the potential paths were tested between religiosity, medication adherence and HRQoL; social support, religious coping and medication adherence served as the mediators.
Religious coping and social support were recognized as the significant mediators between religiosity and medication adherence (CFI = 0.983, TLI = 0.985, and RMSEA = 0.021). The relationships between religiosity and HRQoL were considerably mediated by social support, religious coping and medication adherence and these variables explained 12% and 33% of variances of generic and specific HRQoL, respectively. There was no significant direct effect of religiosity on HRQoL. HbA1c and fasting blood glucose level were successfully loaded on the latent construct of medication adherence (factor loading = 0.51 and 0.44, respectively).
The impact of religiosity on medication adherence and HRQoL occurs through the mediators such as religious coping and social support. Therefore, to improve the adherence to treatment and quality of life, interventions may be designed based on these mediators.