Chris Fearne has failed to keep a promise to provide free continuous blood glucose monitoring to people in their late 20s and early 30s, the Nationalist Party noted on Saturday. 

The government announced this week that it was extending the service to type 1 diabetes patients aged up to 23. Previously, monitors were available to patients up to the age of 21. 

But the Nationalist Party noted that last year, Fearne had told parliament that by the end of 2022 all patients aged up to 35 would get a free continuous blood glucose monitor. Now he was reneging on that promise, made on March 9, the PN said in a statement on Saturday.

“It is good that an additional 40 patients will benefit from this essential service,” PN MPs said, “but a further 300 patients will not be benefitting.” 

The PN said it was a shame that the government continued to pump millions into deals such as that to privatise state hospitals, but was then unable to find the funds to extend key services such as that for diabetes patients. 

Its statement was signed by MPs Claudette Buttigieg, Stephen Spiteri and Ian Vassallo. 

Children living with type 1 diabetes were first provided with free continuous blood glucose monitors in 2021, as part of a pilot project and following years of requests by diabetes lobbyists. 

The service was deemed a success and the pilot project was then extended, first up to age 18, then 21 and now 23. 

Continuous blood glucose monitors are small devices worn by diabetes patients that regularly monitor and report on their blood sugar levels, allowing them to better control the disease and its impacts on their health. 

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