Flash glucose monitoring
Sir, It is fitting to mark this Diabetes Week (June 11-17) for Scotland’s 30,000 adults and children living with type one diabetes by noting that life-changing monitors are now available on the NHS. A child diagnosed with type one diabetes at five faces 50,000 finger-prick blood glucose tests by the time they are 18.
Each painful finger prick is part of a daily routine which also includes calculating carbohydrate intake and frequent insulin injections, all to prevent life-threatening hypoglycaemia and long-term complications.
But since November last year, a ‘flash glucose monitoring’ system called the Freestyle Libre can be prescribed by local GPs, offering an alternative to such intensive finger pricking.
The roll-out of flash glucose monitoring, which gives a reading via a simple sensor, however, is not consistent across all local health boards. So, our message for Diabetes Week is to call for health boards in Scotland to speed up prescription policies and step up much needed prescriptions.
Type one diabetes cannot be prevented and until we find the cure for it, research and technology are vital.
Holly Davies, development manager,
JDRF Charity, Aberdeen.