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Independents' Day

GP diabetes study shows self-testing not needed

GPs across three PCTs have stopped asking patients with type 2 diabetes to test their blood glucose after Dr Paul Cracknell's pilot study showed no adverse impact on disease control.

Dr Cracknell's five-partner practice cut prescribing of blood glucose testing strips for type 2 diabetes patients by 82 per cent in one year after deciding to free up time for their diabetes nurse to focus on secondary prevention.

The proportion of patients with HbA1c below 7.5 rose from 67 to 81 per cent; the number hitting a blood pressure target of 140/80mmHg went up from 55 to 76 per cent; and there was a rise from 62 to 66 per cent in the number with a cholesterol level below 5mmol/l.

Dr Cracknell, who practises in Sheffield, said: 'There was initial resistance, but many patients were relieved they didn't have to test any more.'

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