News that the dropping of the diabetic drugs, insulin Mixtard 30, will mean problems in changing medication for those suffering from the diabetes . There are also concerns that the withdrawal of this key treatment, which is produced by Danish pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk, will bring further strain to NHS staff as they cope with an influx of patients needing guidance on administering and monitoring a new treatment.
It is expected that the removal of Mixtard 30, which some have use for more than a decade, would cause upheaval for both patients and the health service, at a time when the NHS is set to lose hundreds of jobs. Mixtard 30, which is also widely used by children, is a comparatively cheap type of insulin for the NHS, and is thought to be just as effective as some of the newer, more expensive, generation of diabetic treatments .
Dr Michael Small, who is a diabetologist at Gartnavel General Hospital in Glasgow, said "A lot of people on Mixtard 30 have been on it for 10 to 15 years. Those people will not want to change their insulin. It is inconvenient for them. They would need more diabetes nurse specialist input. They would have to do extra blood testing . It would create extra workload for a number of months, especially for some clinics where a lot of patients are on it."
Bridget Turner, head of policy at Diabetes UK, also pointed out that "the removal of any insulin from the market goes against patient choice and will cause anxiety for people with diabetes . If there are any changes to the types of insulin available in the UK, pharmaceutical companies have a duty of care to provide time for those affected to liaise with their healthcare teams to discuss alternative treatment."
Diabetes drug to be withdrawn
Wed, 09 Jun 2010
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