Research Article| Volume 197, 110566, March 2023

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Pharmacy diabetes screening trial (PDST): Outcomes of a national clustered RCT comparing three screening methods for undiagnosed type 2 diabetes (T2DM) in community pharmacy

Published:February 02, 2023DOI:



      To compare the effectiveness of three pharmacy-based screening methods for type 2 diabetes (T2DM): (1) risk assessment (AUSDRISK) alone (Group A); AUSDRISK followed by a point of care test if AUSDRISK ≥12; either (2) HbA1c (Group B); or (3) small capillary blood glucose test (Group C).


      A cluster RCT with a nationally representative sample of Australian pharmacies was implemented with random allocation of eligible pharmacies to Groups A, B or C. GP referral was based on prespecified cut offs. Diagnoses were considered positive if confirmed by a GP, pathology laboratory, or national diabetes register.


      Of the 14,093 people screened in 339 pharmacies, 3059 participants met group-specific referral criteria: 1775 (45%) (Group A); 893 (17%) (Group B); and 391 (8%) (Group C). For the total screened population rates of T2DM diagnoses were significantly higher in Group B (1.5%), compared with Groups A (< 0.8%) and C (< 0.6%) with the odds of detection in Group B compared with Group A (1.8 [1.0;3.0]), and no difference between Groups A and C.


      In community pharmacy, the most effective method to uncover undiagnosed T2DM was a stepwise approach; initial risk assessment; and if appropriate an HbA1C POC test and referral.


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