very far from the truth! I fought for years to
get a pump, and I still can't get funding
for sensors to go with it. Put really simply,
I want everyone to have everything that
they need, but I also have to defend how
we spend money. I believe in the NHS.
I love working in it, although there is no
actual NHS - each Trust is independent
and operates with its own profit and loss,
and a Foundation Trust has more flexibility
than non-Foundation Trusts.
The numbers are big - the Trust I
work for has an annual turnover of almost
£1bn. Each Trust is run as a business and
they are all run differently, which is why
We keep hearing about cuts in
the NHS, and that people can't
get funding for pumps. Why?
The latest challenge from current
politicians is to save £22bn by 2020,
known as the Nicholson Challenge (see
right). Meanwhile, the Government has
promised £8bn - which means that overall
it will keep us equal to today's budget but
with no new investment. The Trust I work
for has to save £43m in this financial year
One sector I pay close attention to
is what we call Insulin Delivery Systems
(or IDS). From a procurement point of
view, there are only a few suppliers in this
sector - Medtronic, Roche, Ypsomed,
and a few others. Roughly, the insulin
delivery systems do much the same thing.
The NHS seems to continue to work on
a 12-month basis in terms of budgets,
yet people with diabetes average several
decades of living with the condition.
Added to that, often we - as people with
diabetes - feel that we're viewed only in
terms of our HbA1c result and that we're
not considered as a person.
Are we as customers (or patients)
the focus of the NHS? It's hard to think
so sometimes, but there are now more
people who are working within the system