Poll results – how should the NHS save money?

Eager Shoot Up readers queue up to vote in this month's poll
Eager Shoot Up readers queue up to vote in this month's poll

It’s that time of the month again, chaps and chapesses – poll results time. Last month I asked how we diabetics should help wrench the government out of decades of poverty and despond by saving money for the NHS.

The results were both disturbing and startling, with 52% of my readers voting for the option “Summarily execute all Type Twos”. You maniacs! I know that 1) there is an endless battle between the priorities of warning people they might have Type Two and providing equipment & resources for Types Ones; and 2) your soaraway Shoot Up is dominated by Type Ones; but this is a step too far not-so-gentle readers! You should all be ashamed of yourselves. Type Twos have feelings too. Apparently.

Anyway, moving swiftly on – the slightly more sane option of managing diet and exercise more effectively came out next, which seems more than fair as it helps both Type Ones and Twos (see, we can all work together in harmony!)

Of most interest was that “reduce blood glucose testing” scored a grand total of no votes. This is because it’s a stupid idea – but, ironically, it’s the option that’s most commonly used by health authorities to reduce costs. I often read of diabetics having problems being prescribed enough strips to test often and effectively – which just goes to show that some health authorities really are run by drooling imbeciles who don’t know their Islets of Langerhans from their somatostatin delta cells. Bah!

However, this month’s poll strikes a more positive note; who’s your diabetes-related idol? You can pick one of the pancreatic luminaries from the poll over to the right. Get voting!

  • FG Banting
  • HG Wells
  • JJR Macleod
  • SG Redgrave
  • NJ Jonas
  • All of the above
  • None of the above

Those results in full:

  • How should diabetics help the NHS save money?
  • Summarily execute all T2s. (52%, 53 Votes)
  • Manage diet/exercise more effectively (27%, 28 Votes)
  • Multiple uses of needles and lancets (11%, 11 Votes)
  • Reduce research funding (5%, 5 Votes)
  • Return to bottled insulin and hypodermics (4%, 4 Votes)
  • Reduce Hb1Ac testing (1%, 1 Votes)
  • Reduce blood glucose testing (0%, 0 Votes)

Ask Fabio Calabria – professional cyclist

Avid readers of your soaraway Shoot Up forum will recall that we got in touch with Team Type 1 and put some questions about cycling and diabetes to Fabio Calabria – a massively talented professional cyclist and top athlete. He’s won the King of the Mountains Classification in the De Bortoli Tour and the New Zealand Road Championships in addition to a whole range of high-profile competitions.

Anyway, Fabio has been insanely busy racing all round the world but found the time to answer some of our questions on video and here they are, along with some fab bike-porn and Tony from The Sopranos!

The age of Enlite-enment

Medtronic have announced that their new Enlite CGM sensor – as played with by  Alison and Tim in Switzerland recently – has received CE Mark approval in Paris which means it can now be launched subject to other local approvals in more than 35 countries. As yet, no news on a launch date in the UK, but this is definitely a step in the right direction.

In what seems to becoming a bit of a trend, the sensors will be launched in Europe before they’re launched in the USA. No formal explanation for that, but it doesn’t take a genius to see that the length of time it’s taking products in the US to get approval from the Food & Drugs Administration (FDA) seems to be a pretty significant roadblock.

This dog is hoping the new, more accurate, smaller, less painful to insert, now CE mark approved Enlite sensor hits the shops soon as certain ShootUp writers only have a couple of old sensors left and are loathe to order a new box when exciting new goodies are on the horizon!

Eye eye

Having diabetes (no, really) I have a morbid fear of complications. Well, not so much “morbid” just a general disquiet that things might go wrong in the future. After all, poor blood glucose management can lead to a plethora of problems, as we all know from the piles of leaflets we were given when we first diagnosed (and which have since remained under a copy of the IKEA catalogue hidden in a drawer somewhere).

The list of things that can wrong is pretty long – eyes, kidneys, fingers, heads, shoulders, knee and toes, knees and toes. So much so it’s almost easier to make a list of things that will definitely not go wrong and so for the interests of the Intermaweb community I have compiled a full and complete list here:

1.    Nape of neck
2.    Eyelashes

Although saying that, I’m always astounded that I have any eyelashes at all given the number I regularly shake out of my rather filthy keyboard (never go for a white keyboard like I did, it just shows up the dirt, darling).

Anyway, as a result of this morbid fear I get my eyes checked out twice a year. Once during  my regular MOT at the hospital, where they take photos of my eyes and send them over the Intermaweb to the Princess Alexandra Eye Pavilion where a poor sod spends all her or his days looking at pictures of eyes for burst or leaking blood vessels. It must be weird having all those eyes looking at you all day – I bet half of the operators have incurable paranoia.

The other biannual appointment is with Margaret, my friendly local optometrist who is a specialist in diabetes and does a far more thorough job than they do at hospital.

Eye tests for diabetics are free in Scotland (hurrah! Every cloud and all that) but it’s almost impossible to escape from Margaret’s grasp without spending money. It starts simply:

Now, while we wait for those drops to start working, let’s go over and have a look at the sunglasses.

Hmm, okay…

And twenty minutes later I leave with a full bill of health for my eyes but clutching a newly bought pair of Ray Ban sunglasses. The NHS may be free at the point of entry, but if Margaret has anything to do with it, it’s certainly not free at the point of exit.

They do look very cool though.

Comatose and rotting toes – the lighter side of insulin dependency