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Freestyle Libre 2® Flash Glucose Monitoring system

22nd February 2021
woman using Freestyle Libre 2 glucose monitoring system

The change over to the Freestyle Libre 2® Flash Glucose Monitoring system is taking place in Northern Ireland, starting from February 2021.

People living with diabetes, including children, who are currently prescribed the Freestyle Libre 1® system, will move to the new Libre 2® sensors prescription. The Freestyle Libre 2® was added to the Northern Ireland Drug Tariff on 1 November 2020.

Over the next few weeks, if you are already using the Freestyle Libre system, your GP practice will change your prescription from Freestyle Libre 1 sensors to Freestyle Libre 2 sensors. We are unable to tell you exactly when this will be.

Please be patient, as everyone who is being prescribed Libre 1 is eligible for Libre 2, and will be contacted by their GP practice.

Please wait for your GP to contact you, as practices are dealing with a high volume of calls during the pandemic.

Watch our video explaining the change over 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the difference between the Freestyle Libre 1 system and the FreeStyle Libre 2 system?

The FreeStyle Libre 2 system is very similar to FreeStyle Libre 1 system, but:

  • It has additional and optional alarm functions. There are three alarms functions for those who need them; a low glucose alarm, a high glucose alarm and a signal loss alarm.
  • It has improved accuracy, particularly in the low glucose range. This means no confirmatory finger pricks are required for insulin dosing even when glucose is low, falling, or rapidly changing.

(Finger pricks are however required if glucose readings and alarms do not match symptoms or expectations.)

2. Do I require a new reader to scan the FreeStyle Libre 2 sensor?

The FreeStyle Libre 2 sensor can be scanned with either the FreeStyle LibreLink app OR with a FreeStyle Libre 2 reader.

You can choose which device you want to receive alarms:

  • FreeStyle LibreLink App OR
  • FreeStyle Libre 2 reader
3. What do I need to do if I scan using the App on my phone?

If you routinely use your mobile phone to scan your Freestyle Libre 1 sensor, you can continue to do this when you start to use the Freestyle Libre 2 sensors. The app will automatically update to the latest version (2.5) to enable additional functionality of the FreeStyle Libre 2 system.

4. What do I need to do if I scan using a reader?

If you currently use a reader to scan your Freestyle Libre sensor you will NOT be able to use this reader to scan the NEW Freestyle Libre 2 sensors. We recommend that you order a new Freestyle Libre 2 reader direct from the manufacturer (Abbott) as soon as possible (even before you receive your new prescription for Freestyle Libre 2 sensors)

You can do this in one of 2 ways:

Go on line and order a free upgraded reader from Abbott  OR

Call customer service on: 0800 170 1177 (Mon-Fri: 8am – 8pm, Sat: 9am – 5pm excl. bank holidays)

You will need to provide the serial number of your current FreeStyle Libre reader; however, you will not be required to return this to Abbott.

Please note: You can only use the Freestyle Libre 2 reader to scan the Freestyle Libre 2 sensors.

You can only use the Freestyle Libre 1 reader to scan the Freestyle Libre 1 sensors

5. What about driving?

Information about driving and diabetes can be found at:

  • The DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency) has permitted the use of flash glucose monitoring systems, such as Freestyle Libre for the purpose of driving with Group 1 drivers. If your reading is 4.0mmol/L or below, you must stop driving and confirm your finger prick glucose test reading.
  • If your glucose if 5.0mmol/L or less, eat a snack. If it is less than 4.0mmol/L or you feel hypoglycaemia, do not drive.
  • Flash glucose monitoring systems, such as Freestyle Libre are NOT legally permitted for the purposes of Group 2 drivers.

Support is available on the Freestyle Academy

Further information is available from the manufacturer website at: