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Blackburn with Darwen CCG

Detailed initial response from this CCG - suspect that they may reply for other CCGs too.


19 March 2019

Dear Mr Cahm,

I am writing in relation to your email dated 15 March 2019, in which you raise concerns regarding NHS Blackburn with Darwen Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) policy for the prescribing of Freestyle Libre®. I understand that you have self-funded Freestyle Libre® since its launch and you run several support groups for users of the monitor. 

You state that through research you have noted that when Regional Medicines Optimisation Committee (RMOC) guidance was released, some CCG policies mirrored the RMOC guidance, some cherry-picked sections and a couple chose a different path entirely.  You have also identified that according to the latest data NHS Blackburn with Darwen CCG is only prescribing Freestyle Libre® to 0.9% of the total Type 1 diabetes patient population in the area; through Primary Care prescribing. However, this does not consider the ‘Red’ rating currently adopted by the CCG.

I am sorry to learn of your concerns and on behalf of NHS Blackburn with Darwen CCG, I apologise for the frustration this has caused.

I understand you would like NHS Blackburn with Darwen CCG to address the following points in resolution to your concerns:

·         From April 2019, what are the CCG’s plans to meet the NHS England Libre policy?
·         How will the Freestyle Libre® process be handled?
·         What RAG rating will Freestyle Libre® be given?

The Customer Care Team at Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit (MLCSU) handles the complaints for residents of Cheshire, Merseyside, Staffordshire, Lancashire, Central Midlands and South Cumbria, which includes the area covered by NHS Blackburn with Darwen CCG.  Therefore, I will be your point of contact for your complaint.

I confirm that your concerns will be investigated in line with the NHS Complaints Policy and our aim is to send you a full and final response within 40 working days. If more time is needed, we will contact you to agree a new timescale for our response.

When you receive our final response, if you remain dissatisfied there is a second stage of the NHS complaints process. This is undertaken by the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO). They are independent of the NHS and will decide how to deal with your complaint. They could carry out an independent review and/or a further investigation into your complaint. We will provide you with details of this second stage in your complaint response letter.

Thank you for taking the time to let us know of your concerns. If you have any questions at this stage, please do not hesitate to contact me.

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