Efficacy of insulin interventions questioned

It’s not enough to assume that discussing insulin adherence with a patient is effective, says a researcher who has struggled to find evidence backing common interventions for people with poorly controlled diabetes.

Dr Sheila Doggrell’s systematic review shows there is “limited and variable” evidence that discussion with a nurse/educator improves adherence. But there is “little or no evidence” that an extra intervention by a pharmacist or doctor helps.

Non-adherence rates to insulin are in the range of 20-38%, she writes in the Journal of Diabetes. “The major aim of the review was to determine whether interventions to improve adherence to insulin do actually improve adherence to insulin.”

She says the government is spending lots of money to help patients take insulin, and the review shows an urgent need to