5,349 people have signed a petition set up by leading diabetes community website, Diabetes.co.uk, requesting the need to offer blood glucose testing supplies to patients with type 2 diabetes that actively wish to monitor their blood glucose levels.
The National Diabetes Audit of 2011 shows that only about 1 in 4 patients with type 2 achieve an HbA1c target of under 6.5% and large scale research such as UK Prospective Diabetes Study has shown that the risk of suffering health complications rises significantly for each percentage point above 6%.
Patients with type 2 diabetes have regularly reported that achieving the target without access to blood glucose testing supplies is difficult, bordering on impossible, yet large numbers of people with diabetes that are actively interested in monitoring their blood glucose levels are being denied the chance to do so and thus being denied the chance to improve their health.
Blood glucose testing supplies are relatively expensive for individuals but only represent 1% of the NHS’ cost of treating diabetes. In contrast, the cost of medication and inpatient care for treating diabetes complications accounts for about 80% of diabetes treatment costs.
Editor of Diabetes.co.uk, Benedict Jephcote, states: “We frequently hear from patients with type 2 diabetes reporting that their GP has refused to prescribe testing supplies on a basis of cost. Whereas those patients that can afford to buy test strips can’t state highly enough how much blood glucose testing has empowered them to improve their health. It’s a very short sighted strategy to deny less wealthy patients the chance to prevent such costly health complications from developing.”

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