Living with type 1 diabetes is a daily struggle of maintaining a balance between food, insulin and activity.

And British Columbia is making it harder. Tell the candidates in your riding that you support #PumpsForBC. TAKE ACTIONLEARN MORE

Meet Natalie

“I started using an insulin pump in 2015 after having my son. We, as a community, are in a difficult place when it comes to the high costs of managing our chronic condition and gaining access to the tools available to help us live well. People with type 1 diabetes in Alberta and Ontario are not faced with the same age limit restrictions on their provincial insulin pump program or the financial burden of out-of-pocket costs. This is a lifelong condition and we should be able to access medically necessary and available tools such as an insulin pump regardless of our age or income level.”

Natalie Woods, 29 years old, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 6 (Burnaby)

SUPPORT NATALIE

Meet Nel

“My insulin pump has given me more freedom. When I retired, my health plan included coverage for one insulin pump only, which I purchased in 2011. I now require a new pump that I will have to pay for out-of-pocket. As a senior, this is a huge financial burden.”

Nel Peach, 76 years old, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 42 (Salmon Arm)

SUPPORT NEL

Meet Kristen

“As a busy and active student, my pump allows me to be flexible in my day-to-day activities and manage my diabetes wherever I am. Losing coverage after I graduate frightens me. My goal is to get into dental school to learn to practice dentistry. Dental school is extremely expensive and having to pay for a pump and diabetes supplies on top of all of my other expenses is unthinkable. We didn’t choose to be diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Insulin pumps provide an amazing means for people living with diabetes to manage their diabetes and everyone should have the opportunity to improve their quality of life. I strongly believe those living with type 1 diabetes should be eligible for BC’s insulin pump program, no matter their age.”

Kristen Eng, 22 years old, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 15 (Vancouver)

SUPPORT KRISTEN

Meet Jessica

“I have been using an insulin pump since I was 9 years old. I wouldn’t be able to live the busy lifestyle I have without one. Many teens in high school start thinking about what they’re going to do when they’re on their own. I started wondering about this when I was in middle school—not just about moving away from home, but how my life would have to change without room for an insulin pump in my budget. Diabetes and the need for a pump and supplies doesn’t just end after 25 years of age. I don’t want to be worried for the future to come when considering my health and quality of life.”

Jessica Schmidt, 14 years old, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 6 (Vancouver)

SUPPORT JESSICA

Meet Natalie

“I started using an insulin pump in 2015 after having my son. We, as a community, are in a difficult place when it comes to the high costs of managing our chronic condition and gaining access to the tools available to help us live well. People with type 1 diabetes in Alberta and Ontario are not faced with the same age limit restrictions on their provincial insulin pump program or the financial burden of out-of-pocket costs. This is a lifelong condition and we should be able to access medically necessary and available tools such as an insulin pump regardless of our age or income level.”

Natalie Woods, 29 years old, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 6 (Burnaby)

SUPPORT NATALIE

Meet Nel

“My insulin pump has given me more freedom. When I retired, my health plan included coverage for one insulin pump only, which I purchased in 2011. I now require a new pump that I will have to pay for out-of-pocket. As a senior, this is a huge financial burden.”

Nel Peach, 76 years old, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 42 (Salmon Arm)

SUPPORT NEL

Meet Kristen

“As a busy and active student, my pump allows me to be flexible in my day-to-day activities and manage my diabetes wherever I am. Losing coverage after I graduate frightens me. My goal is to get into dental school to learn to practice dentistry. Dental school is extremely expensive and having to pay for a pump and diabetes supplies on top of all of my other expenses is unthinkable. We didn’t choose to be diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Insulin pumps provide an amazing means for people living with diabetes to manage their diabetes and everyone should have the opportunity to improve their quality of life. I strongly believe those living with type 1 diabetes should be eligible for BC’s insulin pump program, no matter their age.”

Kristen Eng, 22 years old, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 15 (Vancouver)

SUPPORT KRISTEN

Meet Jessica

“I have been using an insulin pump since I was 9 years old. I wouldn’t be able to live the busy lifestyle I have without one. Many teens in high school start thinking about what they’re going to do when they’re on their own. I started wondering about this when I was in middle school—not just about moving away from home, but how my life would have to change without room for an insulin pump in my budget. Diabetes and the need for a pump and supplies doesn’t just end after 25 years of age. I don’t want to be worried for the future to come when considering my health and quality of life.”

Jessica Schmidt, 14 years old, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 6 (Vancouver)

SUPPORT JESSICA

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.