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MPs want stricter diabetes QOF targets

22 November 2007

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MPs are calling for tighter diabetes QOF targets as research shows that GPs are being rewarded for reaching diabetes targets still classified as poor glycaemic control.

The current GMS contract rewards GPs when up to 90% of their diabetes patients have a blood glucose level between 10 and 50%, while international guidelines recommend 6.5% or below as their optimal target.

The All Party Parliamentary Group on Diabetes (APPGD) suggest the gap in targets does not incentivise physicians to continute to monitor and lower blood glucose levels.

It has suggested that an interim target should be introduced, alongside rewards for 1% drops in blood glucose for all patients.

Adrian Sanders, Chair of the APPGD, said: “It is clear that incentivising GPs to improve their management of patients with diagnosed diabetes, and also those who are at risk of having or developing diabetes will offer huge benefits; and also those who are at risk of diabetes-related complications, but also to the NHS, where huge cost savings could be made.

“The NHS spends approximately £25m a day treating diabetes, the majority of which goes towards paying for the associated complications of the disease.”

Martin Hadley-Brown, member of the APPGD, said: “Given the growing burden of diabetes, both in financial and physical terms, I believe that most GPs would welcome changes to the QOF that would ultimately help them improve the management of their patients.”


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