Happy Fiasp Friday! | Diabetogenic

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Four weeks. That’s about how long ago it was that the first murmurings of Fiasp being withdrawn from the PBS were heard in the Australian diabetes community.

It’s been a pretty wild ride in those four weeks, hasn’t it? I never should be surprised at the dedication and never-say-die attitude of diabetes communities, but what we saw from the Australian community was next level! And it went beyond that, with Aussie advocates rallying our friends from overseas (hello #dedoc° Voices!) to amplify our efforts here. 

And today, news of a reprieve. Fiasp would be available on the PBS for another 6 months for anyone with a script dated prior to 1 April 2023. (That’s the catch – you need a script before that date, or you will have to pay the private prescription cost.)

This is a great result. It gives everyone with diabetes using Fiasp some breathing space to make plans for what happens if we need to change insulins. 

There are a lot of beautiful things about grassroots advocacy. Firstly, it can be incredibly responsive. It takes just one person to share, and the community response is often instantaneous. 

We saw that here, didn’t we. As soon as it was just a hint about what was going on with Fiasp, people with diabetes in Australia took to it. This was even before the Minister’s office was aware of what was happening! From a petition (amazing, Belinda!), blog posts and discussions in social media groups, to standing around conference exhibition halls (this is exactly what was going on at ATTD with Aussie advocates!) the momentum started and picked up speed. 

It is undeniable that the best results happen when everyone works together, and as I said in my post about this issue a couple of weeks ago, …Community advocacy is often the starting point of rumblings that, combined with strong advocacy from diabetes organisations, leads to policy change.

This is a dazzling example of exactly that! A community of all stakeholders coming together, led by community. Doesn’t THAT make you feel all warm and fuzzy? And today, people with diabetes have celebrated in great ways – the people who should be centred in this win for their efforts. This was my tweet about that earlier today:

Some final thoughts

Celebrate the win and cheer with other community advocates. I’ve loved seeing the commentary in online community groups today! Our celebrations are so meaningful because it is our fridges that were going to be bare of Fiasp if this didn’t come through!! 

I know it’s tempting to stockpile, but please don’t! There are 14,000 Australians using Fiasp and hopefully everyone who needs to get a script filled over the next six months will be able to do so effortlessly. Of course there is the human urge to make sure we don’t run out but remember that if you have a year’s supply in the fridge, that might mean someone can’t get their next week’s supply. 

This isn’t done yet! Six months is AWESOME but keep the pressure up with the grassroots efforts that worked this time. 

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