Private health insurance

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This topic contains 18 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by  Hairy Gnome 7 years, 10 months ago.

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  • #5938

    Stephen
    Participant

    Sure I posted this once but it hasn’t appeared.

    I know the easiest way to answer this is just to call BUPA and ask them, but before I do I wonder if anyone has been able to get / knows someone who has got CGM funding on their own private health insurance?

    Similar question for the pumps. My diabetes doc has offered it no end of times and I’ve resisted up to now, but I’m starting to come around to the idea (after 29 years of it, I’m starting to get bored of my solo attempt on the world record for number of injections in a lifetime …..) Based on @tim s wait however, I could be old and grey before the PCT actually get round to providing one!

    Cheers

  • #6875

    Tim
    Keymaster

    The wait for a pump depends on where you are – some parts of the UK it’s a month, other parts years. People seem to like pumps – what objections do you have to them?

  • #6877

    Stephen
    Participant

    Having never met a pumper (first time I ever saw one was on a teen walking round ASDA the other night) and never really researched it until earlier this year, my (probably highly inaccurate) perception of it was always how can it possibly not get in the way all the time? My daughter (9yrs old) and I are very rambunctious, and my wife is almost as bad when it comes to *ahem* stuff :)

    The other worry is the increase (personally) in glucose testing (in no way am I trying to suggest CGM is a replacement for that!) I’ve been far from good when it comes to control growing up, and it’s only as I’ve to get a bit long in the tooth (30 feels long in the tooth …) I’ve tried to repent my sins. I do approximately one solid week of monitoring in every four at the moment.

    Programming with sore fingers is hard!

  • #6878

    Tim
    Keymaster

    I’m on MDI myself and the whole attached-to-a-pump thing was my biggest objection too. But I’ve heard that you get used to it surprisingly quickly. Maybe some real pumpers could chip in here?

  • #6881

    Anonymous

    Well, despite recent entries for my querey about bikinis/pump placement, I haven’t found it a problem. Got my pump just before Christmas, and since then, I’ve only managed to pull the infusion set out a couple of times. Pockets, belt clips, shove it in a waistband of underware/outerware all seem to work well. So do bra staps and camisoles with “secret support” – but I don’t think you chaps will be trying that one out just yet (but I could be wrong! ;-) )
    You do get used to it very quickly.. I have a 6yr old son who knows about “Mummy’s tummy medcine” and avoids hitting me in the stomach or pulling on the infusion tubing if it escapes at my midriff.. as for other times, you can take it off in bed for an hour* (*I should be so lucky??!!!) *ahem* before you go to sleep ;-) or for other exercise for that matter.. just bolus a bit to make up for the “time off”.
    Can’t help about getting BUPA to cough up for any of this stuff – been lucky enough to con the NHS into providing my pump – haven’t tried for CGM (there was rumour when I was pregnant that I could have borrowed one for a whole 48hrs – steady on there!!)
    I know Tim will hate me, but I didn’t have to wait long at all to get mine.. they were trying to persuade me to have it, and it took them a bit of effort to do so.. but that was due to other reasons.. [Tim has asked me to write about it in full another time, but suffice to say, in my 21 yrs experience, I have been a very bad diabetic, and only recently come round to the idea of looking after myself, having, by some miracle, avoided any long term complications to date (well, mega serious ones any way.. ho hum..)]
    So ask the local NHS boys & girls and see what they come up with – you never know (assuming you’re not neighbours with Tim) it may be only a couple of months…
    As for testing the traditional pincushion way, I’m a terrible slacker, but as my Consultant says.. any is better than none…

  • #6883

    Anonymous

    Hi Stephen

    CGM enables you to follow patterns and to adjust when necessary (boring) it also allows you compensate beautifully if you are coming down with a cold etc and it also pleases the consults when you visit the hosp.

    Sore fingers are a pain and I find if I do actually change the needle more often my fingers aren’t as sore. I think I have actually lost a lot of sensitivity in my left hand due to pricking ( I blamed this for not being able to get soft contact lenses out of my eyes hard lenses were fine).

    As for being attached to the pump it can be a pain sometimes but if I’m honest the fact that it does so much and enables so much more freedom is such a bonus. It’s like getting use to injections you just move on but the benefits are far greater. Hope that helps Stephen. As for rough and tumble games with family you can take it off without much of a problem.

  • #6884

    Anonymous

    @mustard – you mean you’re meant to change the needles?! Maybe that’s where I’ve been going wrong..;-0

    I’m from the old school where you had to pay for pen needles, so I made each one last a whole cartridge when I was on MDIs.. finger pricking needles went the same way, but even less often.. umm, more like, only with a new device?!

  • #6885

    Stephen
    Participant

    @charlie – thanks for the input :)

    Paying for pen needles isn’t old school. My glass syringe that we had to keep in meths and sharpen every 3 months is old school! :) But yes I too remember those dark days of the NHS refusing to fund the needles. £15ish a sodding box! I think I made each needle last about a week :(

    I’ll look forward to reading your article, we can compare complications then ;)

    @mustard – I hear you on changing the needle, I don’t reuse any more and it does help somewhat. I’m currently using a Multiclix thingymybob that came with my AccuCheck Nano. So far I must say it’s one of the least painful I’ve used.

    Cheers for the pump pointers peoples, I’m really starting to feel like I’m just trying to put things in the way of it now. I will be seeing the nurse in October so I’ll have a chat with her then about it.

    If any one else does have any input on the BUPA / funding side of CGM though, I would be interested to hear what you know :)

  • #6889

    Anonymous

    @Charlie can you get the pen needles on the NHS now? My stock is reaching the un sterile stage ? and just in case when infusion doesn’t kick in that extra pen dose works wonders!

    @stephen I can’t use any old mulitclick job it has to be me holding monolet and jab. If you remember the glass syringes do you remember being sliced with the razor blade in the path labs? it then took the hospital 24hours to conclude that yes you actually were experiencing a hypo for the first time?

  • #6891

    Hairy Gnome
    Participant

    I use a new lancet every time I test and a new needle for each injection. My finger ends still look like pepper pots, but they’re rarely sore for more than a few minutes or so, and I only test on two out of eight fingers! Even when I shoot up a double dose of Lantus in the evening, I change needles between doses and in the last six or more years, I’ve never had a problem with any of my injection sites.

    So in answer to your question for Charlie above, @mustard, yes, pen needles are available on prescription from the NHS and so are lancets; needle clippers too. There’s absolutely no reason to risk pain and complications by reusing them!

    I hope you get a pump and/or CGM soon @stephen!

  • #6904

    Stephen
    Participant

    @mustard I used to find the stab yourself with the monolet immensely superior to the original blue autolet …. sorry GUILLOTINE! I think you might have me on the path lab stuff, my earliest blood testings that I recall were done with the colour coded bottles. HUGE drop of blood on, wait 30s, wipe, wait 30s, guess the colour :) Then again I do remember my parents and grandparents saving for months to buy me my first blood meter which about bankrupt them I think. Mid 80s and it must of been over £100 back then. Jeez diving down memory lane here, I’ll shut up now!

  • #6914

    Anonymous

    Those colour jobbies were fun! My first meter had a colour changing thingy on the back so you could double check when it didn’t work! My grandad (LONG family history of diabetes…) used to have to check his sugars by putting a tablet in the toilet which made his wee change colour! That was before even the nice green/brown colour changing urine test strips, let alone these fancy blood tests!

  • #6915

    Hairy Gnome
    Participant

    @hils – My grandma, who died about 50 years ago, was a classic example of uncontrolled T2 diabetes. She must have been diabetic for years without knowing it and suffered terrible leg ulcers, sometimes down to the bone and as big as your hand, and refusing to respond to treatment. They eventually cleared up when she went onto insulin and a controlled diet. I can only guess that she eventually used ‘pee sticks’ or similar, as I was only around 12 when she died, and had no idea if she tested or not. Apparently when she died of a heart attack, she was asking for sugar as she went! :D

  • #6916

    Anonymous

    @hils and @teloz back in 1976 we had a chemistry set which enabled you to add 5 drops of wee and 10 of water in a test tube. A clinitest tablet was then added and wow tou should have seen those bubbles!! You then had to match the potion to the chart blue was excellent, green ok and orange meant you then had to do a further test for ketones. I used to love doing the tests the results could be a bit of a pain though and not really very accurate. Testing blood is not as much fun. =)

  • #6917

    Cecile
    Participant

    My granny (Miss Malaprop II) had a T2 brother who developed leg ulcers +/- 30 years ago – she informed us he had a terrible case of “tangerine” and had to have an amputation; I immediately visualized something mouldily green covered with a Tupperware lid, and was quite disappointed when visiting him to find it well-healed, resembling a rosy suckling-pig…

  • #6920

    Annette A
    Participant

    @mustard – I remember those chemistry sets as well – the different varieties of green from bluey green through to sludge colour, up to the vivid orange which lead to the ketone tablets which went purple if bad. At least blood tests are slightly less messy!

  • #6926

    Cecile
    Participant

    And if one is colour blind, you could go to the ants and become wise: my mother’s schoolfriend told me that while attending her Class of 64 med school reunion, one of her fellow students remembered a patient he encountered in a ward telling him:”Doctor, I knew I had the sugar when my pee pot became infested with ants”…wonder if the NHS/Bupa would be willing to cough up for an ant farm ;)

  • #6933

    Alison
    Keymaster

    @mustard Those chemistry sets were great fun. Next to useless when it came to actually working out how much insulin you needed, but always entertaining to pretend to be a mad scientist.

    @stephen Whenever I’ve looked at private health insurance the vast amount of exclusions around pre-existing conditions like diabetes have always made me keep my money in my pocket and concentrate on driving the NHS to deliver good care. I’d love to know if anyone in the UK has ever managed to get private healthcare to fund pump/CGMS, I’ve always thought it was a fight not worth starting.

  • #6938

    Hairy Gnome
    Participant

    @mustard and @alison – Now you mention it, the description of the ‘chemistry set’ seems to stir the dust amongst some of my long disused synapses. It could well be that my granny Kit used the same thing, or at least my mother did on her behalf. At 11 or 12 years old I don’t think I was that interested, at that age one tends to be incredibly self centred. Damn, the 1950s seem a long way away!

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