Diabetics are feeling anxious as goverment removes this crucial benefit

When the Federal Government makes changes to Medicare or the budget, there is always going to be an unintended issue

When the Federal Government makes changes to Medicare or the budget, there is always going to be an unintended issue that rises.

For those suffering from type 2 diabetes are being hit hard as the government changes mean that they lose their subsidy for test strips that allow them to monitor their condition. The strips used to cost $1.20 for a box of 100 strips but starting July 1, 2017; they will cost $60.

The reason that the subsidy was removed was that the government deemed that particular expenditure wasn’t sustainable. The Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee were the ones that recommended the support be withdrawn. Their stance was the strips didn’t improve glucose control despite them being a crucial tool in monitoring the condition.

The PBAC’s position is firmly disagreed with by Diabetes Australia who say “Clinical outcomes and benefits cannot reasonably be expected to arise from the use of a measurement tool”. They also claimed that while the PBAC said that expecting the strips to improve glucose controls was like expecting a thermometer to bring down a fever.

While the situation could also happen to the UK, which will effect new Prime Minister Theresa May, who is also diabetic. It seems that people will be taking other means to get the testing strips.

What do you think about this? Should the government reconsider the change that will affect the over 1 million people suffering from diabetes in Australia?

  1. Marion Larkin  

    I’m type 2 diabetic and if they start charges what they are suggesting I won’t be able to afford that. The blood glucose strips are critical to a diabetic being able to judge how their blood sugars are and being able to control their diabetes better. It’s typical of this government, completely out of touch with reality. Drug addicts (who have caused their own problem by the choices they continually make) get free needles etc, paid for by the tax payer to help feed their addiction, while someone with genetic diabetes who didn’t ask for this disease has to pay for everything needed to help control the disease. Some diabetics have lifesyle diabetes and theirs can be better controlled by changing certain lifestyle choices, but genetic diabetes doesn’t.

  2. David Fleming  

    I would love to know where I can buy test strips for $1.20, I have to pay $2.60 and I am on an aged pension. Furthermore those lifestyle Type 2 diabetics need to be brought into line, even if the Government has to regulate them, money is being spent on these people unnecessarily.

    • Eleanor Norman  

      I think you have to belong to Diabetes Australia to get them at 1.20. That’s all I pay as a pensioner and a member of Diabetes Qld.

    • Mary McGuinness  

      David Fleming, There are different causes for Type 2 Diabetes. Your comment isn’t helpful

    • Joy  

      I only pay 60c for my strips. Doesn’t matter where I buy them. Do you have a card from the diabetic society?

  3. Eleanor Norman  

    If the strips go up to $60, I just won’t test myself.

  4. Linda  

    I can’t believe how shortsighted the pencil-pushers in government are on this issue. Last week they were all bemoaning the fact that it costs millions for amputations and hospitalisations for diabetics, now they cut the subsidy on the main tool for monitoring BGL and assisting diabetics to keep their levels regular. For diet controlled or metformin managed diabetics it can prevent them becoming insulin dependent which then costs millions more to manage.

  5. David Yarrow  

    As a Type 2 diabetic, I recently received a letter from the Federal Government concerning this subject. In part, the letter makes the following point:

    “People with type 2 diabetes not using insulin will receive an initial six month supply of subsidised blood glucose test strips under the NDSS. After six months, they will only be eligible for further access to subsidised test strips if their doctor or other authorised health professional considers it clinically necessary to use test strips.”

    This indicated to me that there is still an avenue open to obtain subsidised strips and, with that thought in mind, i have discussed the subject with my GP and have got him on side. If everyone follows this course of action, the Government may find that they cannot dismiss the power of the people and re-instate the subsidy. We can but try.

    • Sylvia Foulds  

      I am a type 2 diabetic.

      My doctor gives me one year prescriptions for my strips at no charge.

      If your doctor feels it is necessary for you to get free strips, you won’t be paying anything.

  6. Why does this site lie to readers. The price increase only affects people with Type 2 who are NOT on medication. Why? Beccause Type 2 diabetics who do not depend on insulin can have their aituation reversed by exercise, proper diet and losing weight. They don’t have a pancreas problem tney have a lifesryle problem. I took this information from exactly the same article as tne person who posted this “story”. Do ylu like scaring people? Who funds this group – the ,abour party.

    • Frank  

      I agree Patrick. I received a brochure from the government in the mail re this. You get an original 6 months supply and you can continue to get your supplies at your GP’s discretion.
      I am Type 2 and on Diaformin and Gliclazide and my doc says I have no problems. I wish someone would tear into these scare mongers and there was some way they could be charged with frauding the public.
      That includes the stinking media!!!

    • Totally agree with you – only half the story has been told – the scary part! Designed to get more comments……….I am a Type 2 Diabetic on medication – NOT a lifestyle issue before the finger pointers start on me – it is inherited from both sides of my family. I see my Dr every six months for management of my disease, and he will give me a script for my test strips, as I am frequently going into Hypos. There is really NO change imminent at all for anyone who visits their doctor for regular monitoring and management.

      • I forgot to say that I cannot agree with you about the Lifestyle comment – mine is inherited, I have never been overweight and I have always been active. Don’t like the finger pointing – also I’m a Labor voter, what does the Labor party have to do with this decision or this half baked post by SAS?

    • Dave Woosnam  

      We still have to check our blood levels ,I,m border line and working hard to stay off the injections but how can i monitor my work now , By quiting and going on to insulin

  7. Ian Fleming  

    It’s just plain wrong to say people suffer from diabetes. Having diabetes or being a diabetic doesn’t mean you’re suffering. Stop it.

    • Spoken like somebody that can afford $60.00 a box.AND some people do suffer.Why don’t you walk a mile in my shoes.

      • Dana Price  

        Bravo Robert!! Ignorance is bliss I guess

  8. trisha  

    What did people expect when they elected this government. They will dismantle it bit by bit and we will all get very upset and then next election they will win again. What more do people need to understand? Liberals will destroy the basic Medicare organisation denying all the time that they are doing it. It is shocking that people can get terribly ill and die whilst this is all going through.

  9. We pay so much for our medicare and get so little in return.Guess when this happens we will not be able to check anymore.Need to vote all of those Idiots out.I guess lawsuits against the federal government for wrongful death will be showing up everywhere.That is if you could file one on them.

    • Im not impressed with Medicare. It only pays for minimal dental care. Being able to chew your food is instrumental to life but they don’t seem to care. It doesn’t surprise me what they will come up with. I feel the government holds no value on retired or disabled because we no longer work and pay our labor taxes. What happened to our countrys values? Went down the toilet.

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