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Turner: Damage approach to diabetes a disgrace

Monday, 9 August, 2004

Turner: Damage approach to diabetes a disgrace

A Government policy that relies on increased damage to people with diabetes before they become eligible for an important new drug is disgraceful, United Future health spokeswoman Judy Turner said today.

The conditions on prescribing the drug, Actos, will be so tight that only an estimated 3000 of the potential 90,000 diabetes sufferers who would benefit from it will qualify.

"And through that process, these people must essentially have their health further damaged in order to qualify for the new medication.

"Medical specialists are rightly up in arms about this. It is truly disgraceful and utterly unethical," Mrs Turner said.

"It also makes a total mockery of one of the nation's 13 primary health objectives which is to 'reduce the incidence and impact of diabetes'," she said.

"On health issues we must listen to the specialists first and the bean-counters second."

"Something is seriously wrong when you tell people they must suffer unnecessary damage in order to qualify for a tightly released medication."


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