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Stu

Dream Trust – Dr Pendsey issues advice to parents of children with Type 1 diabetes

By Latest News

Dream TrustSome of our members sponsor children and young people at the Dream Trust in Nagpur, India and they will be concerned about the health and wellbeing of these vulnerable young people as a result of the lockdown in India.

This article emphasises his advice that they should not lower their insulin doses because of fears of lack of availability of insulin. This link provides you with te English translation of Dr Pendsey’s newspaper article offering advice to families.

Everyday Meals

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Our booklet, ‘Diabetes – Everyday Eating’ provides menus for breakfast, lunch and evening meal for 28 days. The menus are for everyday eating, so ideal for this difficult time when sometimes we can only buy essential items.

As we have lots of time on our hands at the moment, now might be the time to try something different to eat! You can access this booklet on our website at: https://www.iddt.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/A4_Health_Nutrition_Booklet.pdf

 

After Brexit

By Latest News

Brexit and insulin supplies

As most people are aware, all human and analogue insulins are made outside the UK and only pork insulin is made in the UK. It is understandable that people have concerns about insulin supplies as a result the UK leaving the European Union (Brexit). The insulin manufacturers have stated that they already have stockpiles in the UK and this is more than the normal 6 weeks’ supply recommended by the Government. They have also set up alternative delivery routes into the UK.

 

They are urging people not to stockpile insulin or any other diabetes medication, themselves because this disrupts supplies for everyone and could put some people at risk of not being able to get their insulin. However, it is recommended that people reorder their insulin and other medicine supplies early in case there are local delays.

 

Reassurances from the Royal Pharmaceutical Society have issued a statement to confirm thatprotecting patient care, supporting the pharmacy workforce, and ensuring the continuity of medicines supply will continue to be high priorities for 2021…”Having sought and received assurances from the UK Government, devolved governments, the pharmaceutical industry and others on plans to sustain the supply of medicines following the Brexit transition period while we will continue to monitor the situation in the short-term, the organisation’s focus for 2021 will be on the medium to long-term plans for pharmaceutical care.”

 

Post Brexit changes

Perhaps it is difficult to see at the present time, but there will come a time when we can safely travel abroad again. We are all aware that the UK has left the EU but because of the pandemic, perhaps we are not as aware of the changes as we would otherwise have been…

 

The changes affect us all, but some are particularly important for people with long-term health conditions, such as diabetes, so below is a brief outline of the key changes.

 

Health insurance

EHIC and GHIC – for travel within most European countries we have previously had a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This remains valid until it runs out and then you have to apply for a free Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC). Just like an EHIC, it is possible to apply for this new card on behalf of yourself, but also your spouse/ partner, your children (under 16) and other family members. However, you and each person on the application must meet the nationality and residency conditions which basically are focused on making sure that you and they are UK citizens.

You get a GHIC card by applying on the NHS website: https://www.nhs.uk/using-the-nhs/healthcare-abroad/apply-for-a-free-ehic-european-health-insurance-card/ Be aware that there are some websites that try to ‘sell’ these cards, so do not fall for this, the official cards are free.

A still valid EHIC or the new GHIC enables you to benefit from prompt, largely free health services in the 27 countries which are part of the European Union but from 1st January 2021, neither a GHIC nor most EHICs will cover you in Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein or Switzerland. When visiting these countries, you must make sure your travel insurance covers you for healthcare cover.

NOT a replacement for travel insurance – it is important to remember that the GHIC (or valid EHIC) is NOT an alternative to travel insurance. It helps you to access types of healthcare quickly and usually free at the point of delivery but not all countries offer the same free services that you would receive on the NHS so you could have to pay for some services. In addition, travel insurance is still needed for many reasons including getting you home following an injury, illness or specialist treatment for existing health conditions, such as diabetes.

Just a reminder too, that you need to check that any travel insurance you take out, does cover your pre-existing health conditions and this is not always the case with insurance offered by travel agents.

Passports

  • You need at least 6 months on your passport to travel.
  • Your passport must be no older that10 years, even if it has 6 months or more left on it.
  • You can apply online for a new passport at: https://www.gov.uk/apply-renew-passport and the cost is £75.50.
  • A paper application form can be obtained from a Post Office and the cost for this is £85.00.

 

Brexit

By arch

Medicines
Now that the BREXIT situation is clearer, well a little, the three main insulin manufacturers – Lilly, Novo Nordisk and Sanofi have confirmed that the previous arrangements are still in place. This means that they are keeping at least 16 weeks of additional stock. People should continue to get prescriptions and use their medicines in the normal way.

Pork insulin, which is made in the UK, will continue to be available as usual.

Devices
The government has said that the key medical technology companies have confirmed that they are in regular discussions with all the major companies who provide continuous glucose monitors (CGM), FreeStyle Libre, insulin pumps and blood glucose monitors and strips. The majority of tech companies have confirmed to the DHSC that they have alternative transport routes in place if disruption occurs and have built up buffer stocks.

During the 12-month implementation period, the UK will continue to stay aligned to EU law, and existing regulatory and customs procedures will remain in place. The government expect that supplies, including medicines and medical goods, will continue as usual.

Travel
If you are a UK national travelling to the EEA or Switzerland, you can continue to access healthcare as you do now until at least the end of the implementation period at the end of December 2020.

If you have an EHIC, this will be valid until the end of the implementation period.

More information about the EHIC card can be found at:

https://www.nhs.uk/using-the-nhs/healthcare-abroad/apply-for-a-free-ehic-european-health-insurance-card/

 

FreeStyle Libre sensors shortage

By arch

Parliamentary Question Answered on: Wednesday 19 February 2020

Department of Health & Social Care

Paul Girvan (South Antrim): To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the effect on people with diabetes of the slow-down in production and shipping of Freestyle Libre glucose monitoring sensors from Abbott; and if he will make statement. [745]

Jo Churchill (Bury St Edmunds) The Department is aware of current supply issues with the Freestyle Libre glucose monitoring sensors and it is maintaining regular contact with the supplier Abbott to re-establish the reliable supply of this product.

This is a temporary disruption caused by increases in demand and we have already seen steady progress to improve the situation over the recent weeks.

The information provided refers to the National Health Service in England only.

 

Latest on FreeStyle Libre NHS England press release

By arch

NHS England: Tens of thousands given life-changing diabetes monitors thanks to the NHS Long Term Plan

This is the title of a press release issued on 22nd October 2019 and its key statement is: “Nearly 30,000 people across the country with Type 1 diabetes have received life-changing diabetes monitors through the NHS Long Term Plan.”

Click here to read more

 

FreeStyle availability update

By arch

Availability of FreeStyle sensors

Abbott, the manufacturers of the FreeStyle Libre, has announced it will increase the number of FreeSyle Libre sensors people can buy at one time from two to three at a time.

Customers will be limited to ordering once every 25 days and free postage will continue. This only affects people who buy the sensors privately and does not affect those who have the system prescribed on the NHS.

In addition, people who have been on the waiting list to buy the FreeStyle Libre since April 1st will be able to purchase the system in the “coming days” and they will receive an email invitation to purchase the system.

FreeStyle Libre availability update

By arch

Availability of FreeStyle sensors – update: 31st July

Abbott, the manufacturers of the FreeStyle Libre, has announced it will increase the number of FreeSyle Libre sensors people can buy at one time from two to three at a time.

Customers will be limited to ordering once every 25 days and free postage will continue. This only affects people who buy the sensors privately and does not affect those who have the system prescribed on the NHS.

In addition, people who have been on the waiting list to buy the FreeStyle Libre since April 1st will be able to purchase the system in the “coming days” and they will receive an email invitation to purchase the system.


FreeStyle Libre, IDDT issues press release
July 26th 2018

Low numbers prescribed “game-changing” diabetes technology

Results from Freedom of Information requests carried out by the InDependent Diabetes Trust (IDDT) show just 30 out of the 144 CCGs who responded have prescribed the system to just 174 people. In response to a question on which criteria decisions about prescribing the FreeStyle Libre system are made, 23 CCGs failed to provide any data.

These figures are at odds with stats provided by Diabetes UK which show 9,690 across Britain have been prescribed the technology since November, which is still a low proportion representing less than 2 per cent of the 500,000 eligible people.

To read the full press release click here

As a result of our press release, on July 26th the Daily Express made the FreeStyle libre postcode lottery a front-page story with the heading NHS DIABETES SCANDAL: 490,000 sufferers denied life-saving glucose monitor PM uses.
This can be found online: https://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/994343/nhs-postcode-lottery-denies-diabetes-patch-theresa-may-flash-glucose-monitor

Previous updates on this story appear below

We have had reports from people trying to purchase the FreeStyle Libre and the sensors from the manufacturers, Abbott Laboratories that there is a delay in supply. It appears that there is a 3-week delay in supply and a restriction of 2 sensors per order. This is said to be due to high demand, so hopefully it will be a temporary situation.

Update: 5th April

FreeStyle Libre not available to new customers

Abbott, the manufacturer of the FreeStyle Libre Flash Glucose Monitoring system has announced that they are not taking online orders from new customers until July 2018, due to unexpected demand. Therefore, people wishing to order the FreeStyle Libre for the first time will have to wait until July.

Abbott has also said that existing customers will be limited to ordering two sensors every 25 days. One sensor lasts 2 weeks.

Limiting the number of sensors does not apply to people who are obtaining the FreeStyle Libre free on an NHS prescription.

Leading experts slam current diabetes care in UK care homes – a Call to Action needed

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Professor Alan Sinclair slam current diabetes care in UK care homes

Diabetes care in nursing homes still remains “fragmented” and urgent steps need to be taken to restore the “health and dignity” of older people, leading experts have said.

A review of multiple studies carried out across 25 years involving residents with diabetes has slammed care home provision saying that care homes “often do not meet national standards” of diabetes care and staff training is “patchy”. 

Lead author Professor Alan Sinclair, from the Foundation for Diabetes Research in Older People and University of Aston, said: “Our findings show the level of diabetes care remains fragmented which is quite worrying because figures suggest over a quarter of care home residents are believed to have the condition. Without proper management, it can lead to frailty, dependency, disability and reduced life expectancy.

Click here to read more

 

Talking meter removed

By Latest News

Talking meter removed

Meter for the visually impaired removed from the market
The SuperCheck2 blood glucose meter for visually impaired people has been withdrawn from the market by the manufacturer, Apollo Medical Technologies Ltd. This meter provided blood glucose readings through a voice system.

There is another glucose meter on the market to help visually impaired people with diabetes, the GlucoRx Nexus Voice Meter. This meter uses GlucoRx Nexus test strips and GlucoRx Nexus Lancets.

Freestyle Libre available on the NHS!

By arch

Freestyle Libra

On September 13th it was announced that the Freestyle Libre by Abbott will be available on the NHS from November 1st 2017 for people with Type 1 diabetes. This is a device which checks blood glucose levels by scanning a sensor worn on the back of the arm without having to prick the fingers, so non-invasively. Globally there are over 300,000 users and it is available in more than 35 countries. It is referred to as a flash glucose sensing device and is currently the only one in existence.

Click here to read more

 

Animal insulins continue to be available – statement from Wockhardt UK, 30.11.18

By Latest News

From December 2018, people in the US will not be able to import pork insulin from Wockhardt UK.

This is due to stringent Regulatory Controls, leaving Wockhardt UK with no choice but to discontinue the supply of Hypurin Porcine & Bovine insulin which is directly supplied to the patients in the USA on a “Name Patient basis”.

On November 30th 2018, Wockhardt issued the following statement which offers reassurance to people in the UK who use Hypurin® porcine insulin…

Click here to read more.

InDependent Diabetes Trust
IDDT