Potentially life-changing diabetes technology available across west Suffolk
PUBLISHED: 09:42 09 October 2018 | UPDATED: 10:46 09 October 2018
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A potentially life-changing new technology for many people with diabetes is now available across west Suffolk for the first time.
Health leaders from West Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) have approved the use of Flash Glucose Monitoring following a successful campaign by Diabetes UK.
This means some people in areas such as Bury St Edmunds, Newmarket, Sudbury, Mildenhall and Haverhill – who meet local criteria – will be able to get it free of charge when prescribed by a consultant at West Suffolk Hospital.
Diabetes is a condition where there is too much glucose in the blood because the body cannot use it properly.
Many people with diabetes need to self-monitor their blood glucose levels. This is usually done with a finger prick blood test using a meter that indicates the blood glucose level at the time of the test.
Flash Glucose Monitoring is a different technology which uses a small sensor that people wear on their skin.
It continuously records and stores the last eight hours of glucose readings, and can be read by scanning the sensor whenever needed.
This can free people from the pain of frequent finger-prick testing, making it easier to keep on top of blood sugar levels.
Even though in principle it is available on the NHS, its use is subject to approval by local health bodies, and there are still many areas across the east of England where it is not offered on prescription.
Rebecca Jones, east of England improving care manager at Diabetes UK, said: “It’s really good news that people in this part of Suffolk will be able to get Flash free of charge on prescription. This sadly isn’t the case for everyone living with diabetes across the county.
“We believe everyone with diabetes should have access to the right technology to support them, not just those who can afford it.
“We are calling on local decision-makers in the east of England to ensure everyone with diabetes who could benefit from Flash get it, no matter where they live.”
Anyone wishing to find out about Flash and how to get involved with campaigning can visit www.diabetes.org.uk/get_involved/campaigning/flash-glucose-monitoring
People can also call the Diabetes UK helpline on 0345 123 2399, Monday to Friday, from 9am to 6pm, or email email@example.com