Diabetes UK has called for the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) to exten...
Diabetes UK has called for the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) to extend its draft guidance on the use of inhaled insulin to all diabetics who would like the less invasive treatment.
The call came after NICE issued its second draft of guidance on the use of inhaled insulin, suggesting it should only be available to people who are unable to inject due to a phobia or have physical difficulty when injecting.
The guidance states that needle phobia must be diagnosed by a psychologist. However, Diabetes UK claims this is costly and unrealistic.
"NICE has recognised that some people would prefer to use inhaled insulin. It has also recognised the improvement it can bring to quality of life and patient satisfaction. However, it is clear that its decision has not taken all these factors into account and it does, in fact, come down to cost," said Simon O'Neill, director of care at Diabetes UK.
"The decision to prescribe should rest with the individual patient and his or her diabetes specialist. To wait for a psychologist or psychiatrist to diagnose a needle phobia would not only be costly, but would put undue strain on a service that is already overstretched," O'Neill added.
NICE does not currently recommend inhaled insulin for routine treatment of people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes mellitus.
Many diabetics hope that the inhaler technology will be used to assist all diabetics manage the disease, as many people are uncomfortable using needles to inject insulin.
There are 700,000 people in the UK who need daily injections to stay alive. Diabetes UK urged NICE to review its decision as soon as new evidence becomes available.
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