CCG position in relation to FreeStyle® Libre glucose monitoring

Tuesday 9th January, 2018

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We understand that there is a lot of interest in the availability of the FreeStyle® Libre glucose monitoring system on the NHS in Coastal West Sussex.

Diabetes specialists across the area have looked into its potential use in detail, exploring the clinical evidence, its accuracy, NICE guidance around its use, and how it can work alongside and/or replace other means of glucose monitoring that are currently available.

The Coastal West Sussex Prescribing Committee has agreed that the CCG will routinely fund the FreeStyle® Libre sensors on NHS prescription in Coastal West Sussex in line with the Regional Medicines Optimisation Committee North’s recommendations.

Therefore FreeStyle® Libre will be available for people:

  • with Type 1 diabetes AND
  • who attend specialist Type 1 care AND
  • who meet clinical eligibility criteria such as using multiple daily injections or insulin pump therapy.

It has also been agreed that the system must be initiated by a patient’s consultant led specialist diabetes service; it cannot be started by GPs or specialist diabetes community nurses, although they can support its ongoing use.

Dr Steven Pike, Medicines Management Clinical Lead at NHS Coastal West Sussex CCG said:

“We are pleased to confirm that FreeStyle® Libre will be available on the NHS for certain groups of patients with Type 1 diabetes in line with regional recommendations.

“We recognise there may be some question from patients about its availability, and whilst it is correct that the system has been approved by the NHS Business Services Authority to be included on the Drug Tariff from 01 November 2017, this does not mean that it can be automatically prescribed from that date.

“As with all drugs and devices it must go through local decision making processes, and we have worked with colleagues from Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation NHS Trust and Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust to look at the clinical evidence and benefits of this system.

“Freestyle Libre® is an innovative new device that has the potential to improve quality of life for patients and support self-management. However, at the current time there are significant limitations to the data available from clinical trials that make it difficult to make it available more widely on the NHS.

“We will continue to review the system to see whether there are more groups of patients who may benefit significantly from the system.”

If you would like to find out more about Freestyle Libre®, understand whether you are eligible or ask any questions about your ongoing diabetes management, please speak to your diabetes specialist.

We understand that patients who do not meet the current eligibility criteria may consider buying the system and ongoing sensors privately.