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Delays in intensifying treatment in type 2 diabetes found in the UK

Have healthcare professionals improved the way they intensify treatment in people with diabetes in the UK since the GMS contract came along in 2004? Not according to a recently published study looking at data on people with type 2 diabetes in the period 2004–11.

By Colin Kenny – GP, Dromore, County Down

The authors of this large cohort study, which made a retrospective analysis of over 80,000 patients with type 2 diabetes, found long delays in people either having their oral treatment incrementally increased or having insulin initiated. Slightly under half still had suboptimal control after several years. The best evidence has for a long time supported early intensification in the treatment of people with newly diagnosed diabetes (over the first 18 months from diagnosis). This raises questions about how to ensure people with diabetes do not get caught in the cycle of poor control feeding treatment inertia, and vice versa, that is outlined in this study?

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