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Moving Abroad with an Insulin Pump

Discussion in 'Type 1 Diabetes' started by insulinismylifesource, Aug 22, 2020.

  1. insulinismylifesource

    insulinismylifesource Type 1 · Newbie

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    Hi all, after having had type 1 diabetes for almost 12 years now I have finally decided to join this website (thus, I apologise if I have placed this query in the wrong thread etc).. I have had a burning question for yearsss now. I have seen a lot of questions about moving abroad with type 1, but the vast majority of these are focused on those using insulin pens.

    Background: One of my only dreams in life has been to move abroad, yet having type 1 diabetes has made it feel impossible at times. I am a recent university graduate, and seeing lots of my friends being able to move somewhere else without a second thought has made me extremely envious and is further making me see the doom and gloom of my own existence.
    I did live in Spain as part of my degree for a year, but I cannot emphasise enough the stress I went through in getting enough diabetes supplies for a year... one that was supposed to be fun and educational overall, not one that made me question whether I would perish.

    Anyway, long story short: has anybody managed to move abroad permanently on an insulin pump (and preferably a CGM/ libre sensor too, since I use the latter)? How did you go about it? If somebody has an experience with the Spanish system that would be even better.

    My main concern is that if I do not move abroad with a company that offers me private healthcare... would the public healthcare system allow me to continue with my insulin pump and sensor? I guess I could move back to insulin pens but I have been using a pump for more years than pens now and I am afraid my hba1c will fare worse... I am afraid of the mental stress this may cause.

    Any examples of moving anywhere in the world with an insulin pump (long-term, so say over a year) would be very much appreciated! I am aware that each country will handle this situation differently.. which is partly why it is so overwhelming and confusing.

    Thank you.
  2. MarkMunday

    MarkMunday Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Getting good control with pens is also achievable. I worked overseas in China, Mexico and the UAE for 10 years and I was never able to rely on a state system. You would have to take pump and CGM supplies with you. Insulin in these countries was cheap, though, and I often bought it from pharmacies. In China and Mexico no prescription was required. I would switch back to pens before going overseas. It simplifies what is already a complex process.
  3. Mad76

    Mad76 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Sorry no experience of pump either
    I've been here in Algeria for over a year now. Using pens , easy and cheap to buy..no prescription needed. I get my sister to send me freestyle libres via dhl !

    Good luck
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