UPDATE: NOVEMBER 2018 – within a few days of publishing this guidance NHS England decided to make the product available nationally via FP10 for Type 1 diabetics – see their recent announcement.
This comes into force from 1st April 2019, so for the time being our advice below remains, we are waiting to hear how CCGs locally will implement the guidance.
There seems to be some confusion about the prescribing of FreeStyle Libre within Staffordshire and Stoke. The CCGs are currently reviewing the provision of this service. Patients may be referred into diabetes clinics and receive a starter pack with one sensor. Patients are informed that they will then need to purchase further supplies if they wish to continue to use it.
Due to the review that is taking place a statement was sent out to all GP practices in July which is repeated below:
Information to give to patients in response to patient queries your practice might receive:
Freestyle Libre is still being assessed locally for its place is the management of diabetes. North Staffordshire & Stoke, Stafford & Surrounds, Cannock Chase, South East Staffordshire & Seisdon Peninsular and East Staffordshire CCGs are in communication with Specialist Diabetes Services as to the place in therapy and access to the provision of the sensors. Individual funding requests are not appropriate for patients who would request Freestyle Libre on prescription.
We realise that there is some prescribing across Staffordshire and Stoke as some patients were initiated as soon as this was made available last year. However practices should not be initiating any new patients on this and following the guidance above.
We have received some feedback via CCGs and the diabetes specialist nurses that some community pharmacists are advising patients to ask for a prescription rather than purchasing this as other patients are already having FreeStyle Libre prescribed from nearby practices. I have also spoken to a patient who was informed by a community pharmacist that their neighbouring GP practice prescribed this for an existing patient so they shouldn’t need to purchase it but get a prescription for it. The GP practice still refused to do so as they were following the advice provide by the CCG.
We would ask all community pharmacy contractors and their staff to understand that this service is NOT currently funded, although is being reviewed. If patients ask to purchase this they should NOT be sent to their GP practice to ask for a prescription. Once the review has taken place and the outcome is known we will inform every one of the decision.
If you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact us.