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Diabetes: Medical Equipment

Volume 472: debated on Thursday 21 February 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what advice has been issued to general practitioners on the prescription to diabetics of blood-testing strips. (183907)

In September 2002, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) issued clinical guidelines on Management of Type 2 Diabetes—Managing Blood Glucose. The guidelines include advice on the self-monitoring of blood glucose, and state that although self-monitoring can have benefits, it should only be carried out as part of an integrated self-care package and if the purpose is clear and agreed with the patient.

The guidelines are under review and will be reissued as part of the Type 2 diabetes: the management of type two diabetes (update), expected to be published by NICE in April 2008.

In July 2004 NICE issued clinical guidelines on Type 1 diabetes: diagnosis and management of Type one diabetes in children, young people and adults. These guidelines also state that self-monitoring of blood glucose levels should be used as part of an integrated package to help choice and achieve the best outcomes.

A statement on blood glucose self-monitoring was reissued in February 2005 via the Medical Director, Chief Nursing Officer and general practitioner bulletins to reinforce the message that self-monitoring may prove useful to people in their overall approach to self-care.