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Scottish Government announces insulin pump investment

After many years of campaigning by the charity and patient groups, Diabetes UK Scotland has welcomed a Scottish Government announcement to invest over £1 million in delivering insulin pumps.

All eligible under-18s with Type 1 diabetes will now have access to life-changing insulin pumps under plans announced today by the Scottish Government.

£1 million funding allocated

Funding of at least £1 million has been allocated to NHS Boards to help them deliver pumps to under-18s who need them, as well as tripling the amount of pumps available to all Scots.

Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon made the announcement alongside five-year-old Daisy Slatter – who at the time was thought to be the youngest person in Scotland to receive a pump. After years of multiple, daily insulin injections Daisy’s life has been dramatically improved by the medical device.

Freedom from multiple jabs

Ms Sturgeon said, "Insulin pumps mean freedom from having multiple insulin jabs a day – giving Scotland’s youngest diabetics a normal childhood.

"By the end of March 2013, this treatment will be made available to the 480 children and teens struggling with Type 1 diabetes who could benefit from it.

"Over the next three years, NHS Boards will also increase the number of insulin pumps available to all Scots to 2,000, tripling the current amount."

"Noticeably happier"

Daisy (pictured left) was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in November 2007 when she was just 18 months old. Daisy’s dad, Tim Slatter remembers, "After 11 months of blood sugar highs and lows, and jags coming from all directions we finally embarked on insulin pump therapy on 29 September 2008. It really did help to stabilise Daisy’s blood sugar levels and was noticeable within hours of the pump first being fitted.

"Daisy’s sugar levels were under far better control and she was noticeably happier, although she still pains a little bit when we have to change her infusion set. We were so delighted that she could now eat whatever she wanted, snack whenever and treats weren’t a problem, so long as we knew how many carbs she was consuming."

"Life-changing therapy"

Jane-Claire Judson, Diabetes UK Scotland’s National Director, added, "Today’s announcement is very welcome news and follows years of campaigning by Diabetes UK Scotland and pump users for improved access. The announcement and the Cabinet Secretary's personal leadership on this issue will give people with Type 1 diabetes new hope that they will have improved access to this life-changing therapy."

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