Desang diabetes magazine diabetes news



FreeStyle Libre for glucose monitoring

NICE has developed a medtech

innovation briefing (MIB) on FreeStyle

Libre for glucose monitoring. Published

date: 4 July 2017.

The NICE guidelines have come prior

to news of FreeStyle Libre becoming

available on UK formulary (i.e. available on

prescription). Something that Abbott, the

manufacturer behind the device, is trying

to achieve.

The guidance states: The intended place in therapy is as an alternative to routine

blood glucose monitoring in people with Type 1 and 2 diabetes who use insulin injections.

Finger-prick blood glucose measurements are sometimes still needed, such as when a

person is ill or when they are driving.

The evidence suggests that using FreeStyle Libre for up to 12 months reduces time

spent in hypoglycaemia compared with self-monitoring of blood glucose using fingerprick tests,

and reduces the average number of finger-prick blood glucose tests needed.

The current commercial list price of FreeStyle Libre is £57.95 for the reader, plus

£57.95 for a disposable sensor (including VAT) that must be replaced every 2 weeks.

At the of time publication, no NHS price for FreeStyle Libre was available. The reader

is reusable and has a rechargeable battery that must be charged every 7 days. It also

has built-in blood glucose and blood ketone meters, which can be used with FreeStyle

Optium blood glucose strips or Optium Beta ketone test strips to test finger-prick blood


As an alternative to using the reader, the sensor can be scanned with a mobile device

capable of near-field communication (NFC) and on which the LibreLink companion app

has been installed. The LibreLink app can be used on Android mobile devices and has

similar features to the reader. It can be used with the LibreLinkUp app to share glucose

readings through the LibreView software. LibreView can be used to upload and store

data to cloud storage and to view data on mobile devices and web browsers. FreeStyle

Libre does not provide real-time continuous glucose monitoring or a hypoglycaemia


Resource impact

The resource impact is uncertain, and depends upon the extent to which improved

glucose control through the adoption of FreeStyle Libre translates into fewer

complications, reduced emergency admissions and less use of glucose test strips.

FreeStyle Libre uses 'flash' monitoring to measure interstitial fluid glucose levels at

regular intervals. Once applied, the sensor allows readings to be taken non-invasively,

potentially reducing the number of finger-prick blood glucose tests needed. This avoids

the pain caused by finger-prick sampling, which can deter people with diabetes from

taking regular measurements.

FreeStyle Libre allows people to see their glucose levels at times when readings are

not usually taken, such as overnight. The ambulatory glucose profile allows day-to-day

patterns in glucose levels to be seen, which can be used to plan treatment.

FreeStyle Libre is intended to be used as an alternative to routine blood glucose

monitoring for people aged 4 or over with Type 1 or type 2 diabetes, who have multiple

daily injections of insulin or who use insulin pumps and are self-managing their diabetes.

NICE plans to update this MIB when there is further relevant information.

Download the PDF of the full guidance here: NICE GUIDANCE, FreeStyle Libre

Due to global bovine insulin raw material

unavailability, insulin supplier Wockhardt is

to discontinue the Hypurin Bovine insulin

range. There are currently no alternative

supplies of bovine insulin raw material

available. The discontinuation of Hypurin

bovine insulin does not affect the supply

of Hypurin porcine insulin.

The charity IDDT formed in 1994 to fight

for animal insulins to remain available for

the people who need them due to adverse

reactions to the genetically engineered

human and analogue insulins. This was

been made possible by Wockhardt UK's

manufacture of beef (bovine) and pork

(porcine) insulins. Speaking for the charity,

Jenny Hirst comments, "Wockhardt UK

has announced that the company is

discontinuing supplies of beef insulin. This

is due to worldwide unavailability of the

raw materials to make it. They apologise

for what this means to people using beef

insulin but the situation is beyond their

control, indeed, beyond anyone's control.

In fact, only a very small number of

people are using beef insulin and we are

thankful that Wockhardt has continued

manufacture for this very small market.

If we can be of help at any time, please

don't hesitate to get in touch." Call IDDT

on 01604 622837, or email

To read more, CLICK HERE.




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