Diabetes UK has released its Testing Times report, highlighting the problems many patients have been experiencing with test strips at their local surgeries.
The report found that one-in-four people had either experienced restrictions, or were refused test strips on the NHS compared to one-in-five people four years ago.
The UK-wide survey also found more than half (52 per cent) of people experiencing problems getting test strips had type 1 diabetes, which is of particular concern as NICE recommends that all adults with type 1 should routinely self-monitor blood glucose levels, testing at least four times a day.
Diabetes UK Policy Manager, Nikki Joule, said, ‘These short-sighted cost savings cause people real anguish and potential financial distress. It also means people are struggling to manage their diabetes which can lead to serious consequences for their health, so we urge people to challenge restrictions and refusals.
‘As well as being vital for people with type 1 diabetes, anyone with type 2 diabetes can benefit from testing so should be supported to do so if it is helping them to better manage their condition.
‘Local policies should allow sufficient choice and flexibility for individual circumstances to be taken into account when prescribing test strips and meters for people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes.’
Diabetes UK’s refreshed advocacy pack – Get the Test Strips you Need – is full with details on the test strip restrictions or refusals.
For more information, visit www.diabetes.org.uk