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How much does a private blood test cost?

Discussion in 'Type 2 Diabetes' started by Nike69, Feb 16, 2013.

  1. Nike69

    Nike69 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello, Can you get a Hba1c test done privately and if so how much does it cost? Anyone got any ideas?
     
  2. Yorksman

    Yorksman Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Yes you can but be wary. The private hospitals where I live send the collected samples to the local NHS laboratory anyway. The cost of the blood analysers are prohibitive for them to own their own thesedays. But you need to be careful who does it. For example, this outfit who charge £99 are using a finger prick which is entirely unsuitable:

    http://www.medichecks.com/index.cfm?s=2&d=21&test=GHB

    Capiliary blood from a finger prick is nothing like as good a quality sample from a vein so I wouldn't trust an hba1c from a finger prick. There is a reason why the NHS fill a small syringe.
     
  3. candyfloss

    candyfloss · Well-Known Member

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    You used to be able to get your own HbA1c test done with a home kit for around £15. This was using Glucomen or Myrios kits. For some inexplicable reason both co's withdrew their tests from the market. No demand in a country that relies so heavily on the NHS presumably.
    I dont think you will find this test privately from a UK lab that deals direct with public for much less than £100 now, which is a ludicrous charge in my opinion. I'm sure the NHS doesnt pay that figure. Bayer, hardly a small insignificant co., produce a home kit for 2 tests that is marketed and sold to the public in the USA for around $30 as A1cNow, or £10 per test? It would be interesting to know for what reason it isnt on sale here in the UK. Obviously the price would be hiked up for the UK market like everything is but I'm sure there would be a demand for it.
    Unfortunately I disagree with Yorksman. I have tested these home kits (A1cNow) at the same time as having an NHS and hospital done HbA1c and the results were almost identical - certainly good enough for someone who is diet controlled, like me.
     
  4. donnellysdogs

    donnellysdogs Type 1 · Master

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    My hospital nhs do a finger prick hba1c.... They dont all take syringes of nlood.. Especially with children..
     
  5. Yorksman

    Yorksman Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    There is a lot of published peer literature on the subject of obtaining quality blood samples and on the variability of results. A good starting point for anyone interested in the subject is 'A1C Versus Glucose Testing:A Comparison', which explains the problems: "Numerous factors may contribute to this lack of reproducibility. These are elaborated below." http://care.diabetesjournals.org/conten ... 8.full.pdf

    Whilst that particular study demonstrated variations in results within one sample set under controlled conditions, other studies highlight the differences between blood sample sites and quality of sample:

    Potential inaccuracy of finger prick blood samples.
    Comparison of glucose levels in capillary blood samples obtained from a variety of body sites.
    Rapid changes in postprandial blood glucose produce concentration differences at finger, forearm, and thigh sampling sites.
    and many others

    Arterial blood samples provide the most accurate data, venous samples the next level with capillary and blood spot the lowest and most variable samples as they contain undetermined proportions of blood from arterioles, venules, capillaries, plus interstitial and intracellular fluids. As you can see from this more 'media friendly' web page on capillary samples from the University Medical Centre, "Capillary blood sampling may provide inaccurate results, such as falsely elevated sugar, electrolyte, and blood count values." http://www.umm.edu/ency/article/003427.htm

    My wife who is a Biomedical Scientist specialising in haematology informs me that they run controls on their equipment many times each day. Most people with home equipment don't even do it once per week so in addition to the quality of the blood sample one has also to work within the constraints of accuracy of equipment. For example, my meter showed a plasma bg count of 8.8 mmol/L before I went for lab testing. When I returned, the reading was 8.0 mmol/L. These are of course capillary tests using a finger pricker. The result of the lab test using venous blood was 7.6 mmol/L. A clear difference between capillary and venous blood results entirely in keeping wth the published literature.
     
  6. Yorksman

    Yorksman Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    But you are comparing a capillary blood sample at the hospital with a capillary blood sample at home and that is different from what I wrote which was that capillary blood samples are not as accurate as venous blood samples. I gave an example in my subsequent post above:

    "For example, my meter showed a plasma bg count of 8.8 mmol/L before I went for lab testing. When I returned, the reading was 8.0 mmol/L. These are of course capillary tests using a finger pricker. The result of the lab test using venous blood was 7.6 mmol/L. A clear difference between capillary and venous blood results entirely in keeping wth the published literature."

    For a comparison, you'd need an hba1c reading from a venous blood sample, not another meter.
     
  7. izzzi

    izzzi Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi, Nike69 :)

    You could try Spire Healthcare,for some advice and their cost etc;

    Also although it may sound stupid :oops: , your local vet may have a local idea where you can get a private human blood test which may be a lot quicker yet quite costly.

    Whats wrong with your local doctor for this advice.

    Roy. :)
     
  8. Nike69

    Nike69 · Well-Known Member

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    Brilliant replay, there are always so many that know more than you do yourself. I wanted to get it done before I go back and see the nurse. I wanted to be prepared for the possible onslaught. I have changed my diet and lifestyle massively and my numbers are dropping steadily. However, my nurse has blinkers on, its medication her way or the highway. I am just scared that I am going to have to start lying. If forced I will "take" the medicine so they will continue to see me and give me the strips and stuff, but I need a little longer to get in the normal range myself. Its such a shame they do not support people like me. We would save the NHS a fortune if we were supported to make serious life changes.
    Thanks for all the advice all.
     
  9. Yorksman

    Yorksman Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    No one can force you to take medication and they have to provide treatment. Even if they feel the patient doctor relationship has broken down, you willl be provided with an alternative GP. However, few like to go down that route as they look like proper Charlie's in the eyes of their professional colleagues. All that will happen is that they will note on your medical record that you refused medication despite advice and so lifestyle and diet advice was given. The cost of meds is much lower than the costs associated with self metering. They generally don't want you to monitor yourself if it means they have to pick up the bill - nor do they want to be accused of a postcode lottery. So they will argue that a prescription for a meter and strips is unnecessary because a suitable alternative, ie meds, was offered but refused.
     
  10. Nike69

    Nike69 · Well-Known Member

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    Yorksman, thats brilliant information. The Meds are cheaper than the strips and pins............. oh deary me. This group is brilliant. I have not fallen out with anyone yet, I am always polite and with an educated argument, I can hopefully get what I want.
     
  11. Yorksman

    Yorksman Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    By the way, I asked Mrs Yorks who works in the haematology lab at the local NHS hospital and they do private tests. She didn't know the cost for a hba1c but a blood group test was £28.
     
  12. LittleGreyCat

    LittleGreyCat Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Just a quick check - are you saying that your surgery will not give you an HbA1C test?
    When did you last have one?

    Cheers

    LGC
     
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