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UK patients have poor access to insulin pumps

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Diabetes patients in the UK have worse access to insulin pump therapy than patients in other European countries, according to Diabetes UK and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

In the UK's first audit of insulin pump use, the charities revealed just seven per cent of 247,500 UK people with type 1 diabetes use a pump. Rates in other European countries were up to twice as high. Insulin pump therapy controls blood glucose levels more effectively than daily injections, reducing risk of complications.

The report said patients were missing out because of a lack of specialist support services in the NHS and called for better access to the devices. NICE recommends insulin pump treatment where daily injections cause disabling hypoglycaemia, or blood glucose remains persistently high, despite treatment.

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