End the libre lotto campaign

#EndTheLibreLotto FreeStyle Libre Campaign

We are Scotland based campaigners, however, this is a UK wide problem. Please get involved us the hashtag #EndTheLibreLotto and tweet or Instagram tagging CCG’s, Health Boards, politicians… anyone to raise awareness! 

From the Facebook Group – Scotland FreeStyle Libre Equality Campaign

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#EndTheLibreLotto FreeStyle Libre Campaign#EndTheLibreLotto FreeStyle Libre Campaignlibre scotland map #EndTheLibreLotto May 2018

Our Press release:

CONTACT: Scotland Freestyle Libre Equality Campaign Group member Aileen Hillis

Case studies can also be reached through Aileen.

CASE STUDIES: We have people who can speak to broadcast and print media that would benefit from the Freestyle Libre Glucose Monitoring System but cannot access it due to current ‘postcode lottery’ and those who have self-funded and are funded through the NHS. The Freestyle Libre system is a method of measuring glucose levels which negates the need for regular daily blood testing through finger pricking.

Case study 1: Alan, 64, has lived with Type 1 Diabetes for 44 years and has seen a benefit from using the Freestyle Libre system but cannot currently access the sensors due to the current “postcode lottery”. He had to retire early after his health started to go downhill.

Case study 2: Christina Cran, 42, has lived with Type 1 Diabetes for just three years. She self-funded the Freestyle Libre since it was first brought out and fundamentally believes it has been “life-changing.” She has been lucky to receive the sensors now through NHS Lothian.

‘Postcode lottery’ leaves thousands of people with Type 1 Diabetes fighting for access to new technology, says newly formed campaign.

Just 763 prescriptions for a new glucose monitoring system have been prescribed to the 30,000 people with Type 1 Diabetes in Scotland since being added to the drug tariff on 1st November 2017. (1)

Only four Scottish Health Boards – Forth Valley, Lothian, Ayrshire and Arran and Dumfries and Galloway – have approved the use of the Freestyle Libre. That is despite the system being approved for use in November last year. (2)

The shocking new figures released 7th May 2018 by newly formed campaign group, Scotland Freestyle Libre Equality Campaign Group, show the system just isn’t being approved by health boards.

Working closely with Diabetes Scotland, the group have issued a call to elected representatives to put pressure on local health boards to approve the new system, which helps people with Type 1 Diabetes improve their lives and reduce complications which costs the NHS 90% of their diabetes budget.

To check if their blood glucose is too low, or too high, and before eating, exercising, or driving, people with Type 1 Diabetes have to do a painful finger prick test to draw blood from their fingers. For some this means doing the test over 10 times per day – but the Freestyle Libre system means they can substantially reduce the number of daily blood tests with a painless scan on a sensor that is inserted into their arm and replaced every 14 days.

Aileen Hillis from the Scotland Freestyle Libre Campaign said:

“Once again we see a postcode lottery in the care and treatment of diabetes, this is unacceptable. People with Diabetes across Scotland need access to these sensors now, giving them an equal opportunity to manage their diabetes like those with access to them. This will save the NHS money by reducing hospital admissions and the likelihood of long-term complications.”

“Diabetes complications cost the NHS in Scotland around £130m a year. The better diabetes is managed the more we reduce the risk of severe complications such as heart disease, blindness or amputations. But not just that, diabetes is a massively complicated 24/7 condition, technology gives us back a certain quality of life others enjoy.”

“Technology in the care and treatment of Type 1 Diabetes is moving at the quickest pace we’ve ever seen and has the potential to save the NHS millions – and yet this prescriptions scandal means that we’re being denied access. It’s scandalous. It was added to the drug tariff in November, yet only four health boards areas will currently prescribe it. We should all have the same opportunity to live as long and as healthy a life as possible.”

Alan Urquhart, 64, who has been living with Type 1 Diabetes for 44 years, said: “I have always struggled to balance my glucose levels and fear the long-term implications. In despair I privately funded a Freestyle Libre system and after just 4 weeks my glucose levels are more stable and much better controlled. As a pensioner, I can’t afford to buy sensors all the time. I feel discriminated against on my post-code and my low income!”

Paul Niven, 39, who lives in the NHS Grampian area, has had Type 1 Diabetes for 20 years and is unable to access the Freestyle Libre sensors. His brother Keith, 38, and also Type 1 has been getting sensors on prescription as he lives in NHS Lothian. Paul said, “I think my brother and I perfectly highlight the issue of postcode lottery in NHS Scotland. It’s frustrating that he is able to access this on prescription, but I can’t, simply because we now live in different health board areas. He has told me of all the improvements he has noticed since using the Libre. It just seems unfair that I am unable to receive the same standard of treatment for my diabetes as he can.”

NHS Lothian have shown efficiency and success with starting almost 1,000 patients on the Libre system and willingness to share their model with all other boards around Scotland, saving them time and valuable resources.

Diabetes Scotland and The Scotland Freestyle Libre Campaign group is calling on all of Scotland’s Health Boards to allow the prescribing of the sensors, and for our elected representatives to hold the boards to account. This unacceptable situation needs to be addressed to give people with diabetes the tools they need for a long and healthy life.

Note to Editors

  1. NHS National Shared Services Prescribing Data February 2018
  2. https://www.diabetes.co.uk/news/2017/sep/freestyle-libre-to-be-available-on-the-nhs-from-november-90762474.html

More case studies available on request.

#EndTheLibreLottoFor social media please use hashtag #EndTheLibreLotto

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