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Diabetes Medicine Available To More People

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Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Diabetes Medicine Available To More People

Wellington. Aug 16 NZPA - People with type 1 and type 2 diabetes will now have greater access to some medicines and diabetes management products after funding provided in this year's budget.

Government drug funder Pharmac has announced greater access to insulin glargine, blood ketones testing strips and diabetes treatment acarbose. There will also be more funding for insulin glulisine.

Pharmac medical director Dr Peter Moodie said the opening of access to insulin glargine was the most significant of the decisions.

Insulin glargine, which only needed to be injected once a day, would have its special authority restriction removed, which meant it could now be used by those with type 1 and type 2 diabetes, and insulin glulisine will be newly-subsidised.

Insulin glulisine will have no access restrictions, meaning it could be used by anyone requiring short acting insulin injections.

"Injections can be painful and inconvenient, so people needing insulin can prefer to have the once-daily treatments that long-acting preparations provide," Dr Moodie said.

Pharmac estimated about 5000 people use insulin glargine now and expected the number to double within three years, with a further 2500 on insulin glulisine.

The agreement contained rebates that reduced the price for insulin glargine, though details were still confidential.

Most aspects of the agreement have been put in place from August 1 while one of the dosage strengths of insulin glulisine would be funded from September 1.

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