More than 463,000 British Columbians – 9.2 per cent of us – have been diagnosed with diabetes. Between five to 10 per cent of these individuals live with type 1 diabetes and the remaining 90 per cent or greater live with type 2 diabetes.
The personal health burden is significant — diabetes is a leading cause of blindness, and contributes to 40 per cent of heart attacks, 30 per cent of strokes, half of kidney failures requiring dialysis, and an astonishing 70 per cent of all non-traumatic limb amputations.
The cost of untreated diabetes is also significant as diabetes complications account for 80 per cent of the cost of diabetes to our health-care system.
Insulin pumps are transformative for those living with type 1 diabetes. Research shows that insulin pumps lead to better health outcomes and quality of life. However, BC’s insulin pump program is age-restricted. British Columbians with type 1 diabetes over the age of 25 are forced to pay up to $7,000 every five years for an insulin pump.
For many British Columbians, insulin pumps are too expensive. Twenty-five per cent of people with diabetes report that the cost of medications, supplies, and devices affects their adherence to treatment. Too many have to choose between food and rent, or the medication, devices and medical supplies they need to live well.
People with diabetes deserve better than this. They deserve an insulin pump program that helps all people in our province living with type 1 diabetes.
We need to make our voices heard.
Use this tool to contact the provincial candidates in your riding and tell them: it’s time to make #PumpsForBC accessible to all British Columbians living with type 1 diabetes who are medically eligible, regardless of age.