Impact of achieving primary care targets in type 2 diabetes on health outcomes and healthcare costs
Keng MJ., Tsiachristas A., Leal J., Gray A., Mihaylova B.
© 2019 John Wiley & Sons Ltd Aims: In England and Wales, the National Diabetes Audit (NDA) assesses the quality of management of type 2 diabetes (T2D) in primary care using treatment targets for HbA1c ≤58 mmol/mol, total cholesterol <5 mmol/L and blood pressure ≤140/80 mm Hg. We quantified the impact of variation in achieving these targets on health outcomes and healthcare costs across general practitioners' (GP) practices. Methods: Summary of characteristics of T2D patients from the 2015–2016 NDA were used to generate representative populations of T2D patients. The UKPDS Outcomes Model 2 was used to estimate long-term health outcomes and healthcare costs. The effects of achieving treatment targets on these outcomes were evaluated using regression models. Results: Achieving more of the HbA1c, cholesterol and blood pressure targets led to a lower incidence of diabetes-related complications. Approximately 0.5 (95% CI, 0.4-0.6) quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) and 0.6 (95% CI, 0.4-0.7) years of life (LYs) were gained by T2D patients over a lifetime for each additional target met. The projected healthcare cost savings arising from fewer diabetes-related complications as the result of achieving one, two or three targets compared to none were £859 (95% CI, £553-£1165), £940 (95% CI, £485-£1395) and £1037 (95% CI, £414-£1660) over a patient's lifetime. A typical GP practice in the lowest performing decile (average, 371 T2D patients per practice, with 27% achieving all targets) is projected to gain 201 (95% CI, 123-279) QALYs and 231 (95% CI, 133-329) LYs, if all T2D patients achieved all three targets. Conclusions: Substantial gains in health outcomes and reductions in healthcare costs could be achieved with further improvements in attainment of HbA1c, cholesterol and blood pressure targets for T2D patients.