On Monday this week you may have seen in the news that the number of people diagnosed with diabetes in the UK has soared by 60%1 in the past decade. It was also mentioned that the spending on diabetes drugs has increased during that time and we can all appreciate that the financial resources available for paying for drugs in the UK are not limitless. It is important that money is spent on pharmaceutical clinical trials to assess safety, efficacy and more importantly the complications of diabetes which can be associated with substantial costs.
Barbara Young, the chief executive of Diabetes UK, said the government needed1 to act to prevent new cases and improve treatment for those already affected. She said: “Diabetes already costs the NHS nearly £10bn a year, and 80% of this is spent on managing avoidable complications. So there is huge potential to save money and reduce pressure on NHS hospitals and services through providing better care to prevent people with diabetes from developing devastating and costly complications,” she added.
So the focus cannot be simply on the laboratory blood glucose values for a patient with diabetes but should be on providing treatments that reduce the risk of diabetes related complications.
In addition, pharmaceutical management should be on clinical guidelines that support an individualized approach to diabetes care.