For the past year or so we have been hearing clips about the Bionic Pancreas Project. I was lucky enough to have heard Dr. Ed Damiano present about his work at the CWD Friends for Life Conference in Toronto. It was the first time that I was truly excited by what was happening in diabetes research.
This was a project that was privately funded and motivated by a
father’s love. There was no political agenda to hold things up. There
was only his passion and desire to see his son safe when he could no
longer be there to watch him at night. His drive pulled at my heart and
for the first time gave me hope.
This summer, clinical trials are continuing. More adults are getting
to experience life with the bionic pancreas. More children are getting
to experience it as well. According to the latest video, they are now
reaching the stage to change the design making things more streamline.
This is moving quickly to become a reality!
Being me, and spending so many years advocating for access to
better treatments regardless of income or insurance coverage, I can’t
help but wonder what direction this project will take. To me, and I am
sure to Dr. Damiano, this device is the diabetes equivalent of a
pacemaker and should come under the larger umbrella of our health care
system making it available to everyone who is insulin dependent.
At this stage, they are far from knowing how things will proceed in
terms of distribution. We will have to wait. While we wait, I will
continue to work to see access to insulin pumps and CGMs for all people with diabetes regardless of age. I will continue to put money into my son’s RDSP
just in case he does have to purchase the system out-of-pocket to begin
with. If need be, we will advocate for access for everyone to this
life changing technology but for now, I will watch and cheer from the
sidelines. I will hope that this will be the technology that changes
the life of my son and all of our children with diabetes (no matter what