NHS Wales recommends Tresiba basal insulin

By Editor
28th October 2016
Latest news, Pharmaceutical

A specific type of long-acting basal insulin has now been recommended for use within NHS Wales, it has been announced. 

The All Wales Medicines Strategy Group (AWMSG) has issued guidance stating that Novo Nordisk’s insulin, Tresiba® can now be used for restricted use.

More than 188,000 people are living with diabetes in Wales and a further 540,000 people are at high risk of developing the disease.

Professor Steve Bain, assistant medical director for research and development for ABM University Health Board and Clinical Lead for the Diabetes Research Unit in Wales, said: “Today’s announcement by the AWMSG is great news for prescribers and people living with type 1 or type 2 diabetes in Wales.

All patients have bespoke needs so it’s good news that we now have access to an alternative treatment option to help manage the condition.”

NHS Wales currently spends around £500 million per year on diabetes, equating to 10 per cent of its annual health budget.

A total of 80 per cent of this figure is spent on managing complications, most of which could be prevented, including the effects of low blood sugar levels, known as hypoglycaemia.

On a day-to-day basis, hypoglycaemia (hypos) can range from mild to severe and can be significantly debilitating, greatly impacting quality of life, affecting people’s sleep patterns, their relationships and their ability to work.

Symptoms may include trembling, hunger, blurred vision and in extreme cases; confusion and disorientation, intense nightmares, seizures, or even loss of consciousness.

Professor Bain added: “Unfortunately, for many of my patients whose blood sugar levels are controlled with insulin, hypoglycaemia is a common and problematic issue.

“Clinical trials have shown insulin degludec can help people experiencing hypoglycaemia, so today’s news means that clinicians like myself can have added confidence in an additional treatment option to offer adults with type 1 or type 2 diabetes.”

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