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Diabetes NZ joins call for change at Pharmac

7 April 2005

Diabetes New Zealand Joins with Calls for Changes to Pharmac

Diabetes New Zealand has joined with United Future leader, Peter Dunne, and other health advocacy organisations, in calling for changes to Pharmac and improved access to health medicines and products for New Zealanders.

“Pharmac’s narrow and short-sighted focus on driving down every last cost will have serious consequences for New Zealand in terms of both health outcomes and health costs” says Murray Dear, President of Diabetes New Zealand.

“We are at a loss to understand a recent Pharmac decision to impose limits on the access of 40,000 people with Type 2 diabetes to important self-monitoring products. This flies in the face of everything we have been trying to achieve in terms of early intervention and self-management of diabetes. The few dollars Pharmac is shaving off its budget today will only serve to drive up the cost of managing diabetes in coming years, not to mention the health costs to the individual.

“However, I do sympathise with Pharmac. They can, after all, only operate within the framework and budget set for them by the Minister of Health. There is an increasing feeling among health NGOs that current government policies are now actually denying people access to medicines. We are deeply concerned that the Government’s funding policies are increasingly pre-empting decisions on the care of patients that should rightly be made by health professionals. Some answers from Annette King on these issues are now required” says Mr Dear.

ENDS


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