Removal of government subsidy for blood sugar test strip would mean type 2 diabetics in Australia would pay $60/100 ...
Strips for blood sugar testing is part of a diabetes kit , along with a glucometer, pen, needle, insulin and maintenance medication. But when the strip is so expensive, diabetics would scrimp and test their blood sugar level less which is the situation looming in Australia.
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that the federal government, which just got a fresh mandate in the July 2 election, removed the subsidy on test strips for type 2 diabetics who are not insulin dependent beginning July 1. There is, however, a six-month grace period, so until December, they could still buy the strips at subsidised cost. With the removal of the subsidy, they would have to pay $60 from $1.20 for a box of 100 strip beginning 2017 which would hike the cost of blood sugar testing 50 times.
The reason behind the subsidy removal is government claims the hike in health expenditure was unsustainable. It was the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) which recommended removing the subsidy because it found in a review that there is not much evidence the strips improve glucose control, quality of life or long-term complications.