Artificial pancreas will be piloted in 1,000 diabetics, says NHS CEO

NHS England will provide artificial pancreas devices to 1,000 type 1 diabetes patients as part of a pilot study of the technology, according to chief executive Sir Simon Stevens.

The diabetics will be offered the closed-loop systems, which continually monitor glucose levels in the blood and uses the data to automatically adjust the dose of insulin delivered by an externally worn pump, at around 25 specialist centres across England.

The approach means that the pump can vary insulin delivery if blood glucose starts to go too low or too high, such as after vigorous exercise or during sleep.

Continuous glucose monitors (CGMs) such as Abbott’s Freestyle Libre can be worn on the skin, and allow patients to track levels using a smartphone app.

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