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Lila

Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
I want to apologise.

Hi Everyone, hope you are all staying safe and well.
I’ve been feeling very guilty and wanted to get it off my chest so be prepared for a little bit of a long read!

Due to having Type 1 Diabetes and living with my dad who has COPD and asthma, I was prepared to stay at home for twelve weeks before the lockdown was formally announced. At this point I had enough insulin probably for a couple of months because every so often I order my monthly repeat prescription of insulin when it is due but I may still have some left over. I do this occasionally to make sure I never fall short. It is not so much that it would go out of date or that I wouldn’t end up using it, just about a box or two of 5ml vials as a buffer. But with the panic around coronavirus I felt scared and I worried about having to leave the house a few weeks into the crisis when perhaps my risk of catching anything would be higher. I also worried I would be using more insulin. For this reason, I asked my GP to refill my repeat prescription with some items being ordered ten days early and others five days early. I thought by doing this I would ensure (if I tried to ration my test strips a little and reuse my needles) I wouldn’t have to collect another prescription for the twelve weeks. I didn’t order my Freestyle Libre on prescription as I had bought a few online in anticipation that the pharmacy often doesn’t have the Libre in stock. I also felt as I had the ability to buy some, I should leave what might be available in the pharmacy to those who cannot afford to do that. However, this was not my thinking when it came to insulin. As I mentioned, I had already built up a buffer of insulin. I was fine and would be fine. But, I felt it would be helpful and sensible to get a hold of things now to prepare. So, I ordered my Humalog and Levemir. I’m not sure whether at the time of ordering the idea that this would put any strain on the pharmacy or GP crossed my mind. Or whether there was any way in my mind that insulin stocks would dwindle with this behaviour. When I saw my order was approved, I was happy! I felt I had one less thing to worry about and I had provided for myself. But then I started seeing health care professionals on Twitter and members of the Diabetes Online Community talking about stockpiling, ordering prescriptions early, ordering more than you need. I read these and guilt struck me. Is this what I did? Have I stockpiled? I only ordered my allocated month’s worth, but early. I didn’t try to get two or three times a normal prescription. But I had enough insulin didn’t I? I didn’t need to order it and I definitely didn’t need to order it early. So now, everyday I feel so guilty and shameful. I’ve come close to offering my insulin to people who might not have been able to get hold of some. I considered returning it to the pharmacy and tentatively asked them this over the phone, but was told the pharmacy was doing fine. I had also told them to give the test strips I had ordered (but wasn’t able to pick up the same day as my insulin and needles etc) to anyone who needs them. I had some from my previous prescription and had bought some online (something I also do every so often as sometimes I find my monthly prescribed allowance isn’t enough). But, the pharmacy just said it was fine and to pick them up whenever. I haven’t gone to pick them up and I hope they have made their way to anyone who needs them. Now I question whether I should just hold on to my insulin and be sure to not order more when I don’t need to. Or whether I need to find a way to give it to others. Have I unreasonably scaled my actions to an enormous size where it feels my behaviour has directly led to suffering and maybe death? I don’t know.

I just sincerely want to apologise. x
 

Inka

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
Hi @Lila I don’t think you need to apologise :) People do order prescriptions early eg if they’re going on holiday (in normal times) or if they know they won’t be able to get to the pharmacy. You didn’t do anything awful - forget it and concentrate on keep well and supporting your dad.

My advice is not to worry any further. Use the insulin you’ve got over the next few weeks and make sure you’re not about to run out. Re-order when you need to :)

I hope you and your father stay well. X
 

Robin

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
Be a bit kinder to yourself! You were worried, you needed to prepare yourself for not going out for 12 weeks or more. It's not like you bought up boxes and boxes of something and then sold them on ebay! If you’d read of a shortage, you might have had reason to feel guilty, but as you say, your pharmacy is doing OK. Luckily we had stocks of it in the country against a no-deal Brexit.
Insulin is not easily given away, if it’s returned to the pharmacy it has to be destroyed, and I think the charity that used to collect it for the third world has stopped taking it, so keep what you’ve got and use it. That means when others are ordering insulin in the coming weeks, you won’t have to, and it’ll ease any strain further down the line.
I have to say, I use so little basal that I often have a 5 month supply in, just because it comes in boxes of 5 and I only use one a month! I also always order before I get to the last cartridge just in case it's gone off, or I drop the pen and crack the glass.
 

Ljc

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1.5 LADA
Hello @Lila. Their is absolutely no need to apologise. Please believe your pharmacy. Imo it’s wise to order a little earlier than normal even on our main site they suggest ordering prescriptions at 14 days.
I have a bit of a buffer for all my meds (I’m on quite a fewo_O ) just in case their is a delay of some sort, I’ve done this for yrs.
So please collect you prescription including the test strips , though I have T2 I am on MDI of insulin and a Libre user, so I know how important it is to do fingerpicks esp when correcting highs and lows , the Libre great though it is , is not at its best at those times and you’re most likely to overshoot. so please don’t put yourself at risk by limiting their use.
 
Last edited:
D

Deleted member 25429

Guest
I want to apologise.

Hi Everyone, hope you are all staying safe and well.
I’ve been feeling very guilty and wanted to get it off my chest so be prepared for a little bit of a long read!

Due to having Type 1 Diabetes and living with my dad who has COPD and asthma, I was prepared to stay at home for twelve weeks before the lockdown was formally announced. At this point I had enough insulin probably for a couple of months because every so often I order my monthly repeat prescription of insulin when it is due but I may still have some left over. I do this occasionally to make sure I never fall short. It is not so much that it would go out of date or that I wouldn’t end up using it, just about a box or two of 5ml vials as a buffer. But with the panic around coronavirus I felt scared and I worried about having to leave the house a few weeks into the crisis when perhaps my risk of catching anything would be higher. I also worried I would be using more insulin. For this reason, I asked my GP to refill my repeat prescription with some items being ordered ten days early and others five days early. I thought by doing this I would ensure (if I tried to ration my test strips a little and reuse my needles) I wouldn’t have to collect another prescription for the twelve weeks. I didn’t order my Freestyle Libre on prescription as I had bought a few online in anticipation that the pharmacy often doesn’t have the Libre in stock. I also felt as I had the ability to buy some, I should leave what might be available in the pharmacy to those who cannot afford to do that. However, this was not my thinking when it came to insulin. As I mentioned, I had already built up a buffer of insulin. I was fine and would be fine. But, I felt it would be helpful and sensible to get a hold of things now to prepare. So, I ordered my Humalog and Levemir. I’m not sure whether at the time of ordering the idea that this would put any strain on the pharmacy or GP crossed my mind. Or whether there was any way in my mind that insulin stocks would dwindle with this behaviour. When I saw my order was approved, I was happy! I felt I had one less thing to worry about and I had provided for myself. But then I started seeing health care professionals on Twitter and members of the Diabetes Online Community talking about stockpiling, ordering prescriptions early, ordering more than you need. I read these and guilt struck me. Is this what I did? Have I stockpiled? I only ordered my allocated month’s worth, but early. I didn’t try to get two or three times a normal prescription. But I had enough insulin didn’t I? I didn’t need to order it and I definitely didn’t need to order it early. So now, everyday I feel so guilty and shameful. I’ve come close to offering my insulin to people who might not have been able to get hold of some. I considered returning it to the pharmacy and tentatively asked them this over the phone, but was told the pharmacy was doing fine. I had also told them to give the test strips I had ordered (but wasn’t able to pick up the same day as my insulin and needles etc) to anyone who needs them. I had some from my previous prescription and had bought some online (something I also do every so often as sometimes I find my monthly prescribed allowance isn’t enough). But, the pharmacy just said it was fine and to pick them up whenever. I haven’t gone to pick them up and I hope they have made their way to anyone who needs them. Now I question whether I should just hold on to my insulin and be sure to not order more when I don’t need to. Or whether I need to find a way to give it to others. Have I unreasonably scaled my actions to an enormous size where it feels my behaviour has directly led to suffering and maybe death? I don’t know.

I just sincerely want to apologise. x
There is no need to feel guilty at all . I only use one pen of both novarapid and lantus a month so often have 5 months supply in my fridge . X
 

trophywench

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
My reply to you is - don't be daft! Our lives depend on insulin and it's hardly profligate to have more than enough of it - compare that to not having enough and what a strain that would put on the NHS, when you didn't need to run out of it.

In February I happened to say to my husband, I must remember to order a repeat prescription, remind me tomorrow …. in the event he kindly did it for me, but didn't enquire which things I needed first. Ooops though - I already had rather more insulin in the fridge than I usually have, so I've just been gradually working my way through it in date order. Started on the first box of pump cartridges prescribed in February yesterday. Then as I start the other box around 10th May or thereabouts, that's the point at which I'll order another 2, ie my standard repeat prescription, as one box doesn't quite last me a full calendar month.
 

SB2015

Forum Host
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
Hi @Lila and welcome to the forum.

In the circumstances you made a sensible decision to ensure that you had enough insulin. I also end up with about 3 months supply on ordering and I never leave it to the last fill of my pump. We need to be sensible and ensure that we are prepared, and at present it is difficult to predict what we need to do.

Keep safe and look after your Dad
 

Lila

Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
hi everyone, thank you for your kind replies. I admit I have up days and down days regarding all this and how bad I may be feeling! Don't worry I will definitely keep myself safe and still check with a test strip if I am unsure even when wearing the libre. I just felt very bottled up and wanted to vent and apologise to those who understand! Thank you for reading my very long post ahahah. I hope you are all safe and well and looking after yourselves too. xxx
 

SB2015

Forum Host
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
hi everyone, thank you for your kind replies. I admit I have up days and down days regarding all this and how bad I may be feeling! Don't worry I will definitely keep myself safe and still check with a test strip if I am unsure even when wearing the libre. I just felt very bottled up and wanted to vent and apologise to those who understand! Thank you for reading my very long post ahahah. I hope you are all safe and well and looking after yourselves too. xxx
This is a good place to come and have a rant, moan, or just say it how it is.
People will definitely understand.

Keep in touch.
 
D

Deleted member 27171

Guest
Hi @Lila welcome to the forum, as you can see already it's a really supportive place to be. I'm glad you've had some reassuring replies and do hope you are feeling less guilty because of it - it is a stressful time so do pop by whenever you need to have chat/offload or anything else.
 

Ralph-YK

Much missed Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 2
Well, I requested most of my tablets early. I neaded to request some, and another was due to run out the week after.
I'm on monthly repeats, as I think you are. So we are talking only a couple of weeks, and a months worth. Of what you would have been having pretty soon anyway. So it isn't really making much of a difference to stocks in your area.
 

Drummer

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 2
Most things work together for good.
I went shopping and picked up my prescription for my thyroid tablets just before the first panic buying began. I did not have to go out again for three weeks, so freeing up what supplies there were for others to buy, and keeping me safe from all contact with the outside world.
We can never know what might have been right or wrong at the time, but accepting that our actions might actually have been for the best does give a little peace of mind.
 

Northerner

Admin (Retired)
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
No apology necessary :) You will use these items eventually, so it's not as though you are ordering things you will not need :) I always have a good stock of the essentials that I know will not be wasted over time - you cannot place yourself in a position where you are worrying where next week's insulin is coming from, or even the next couple of months in the current situation :)
 

PhoebeC

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
On NHS online it advises to order items 14 days in advance which to to me seems overkill when it only took 1 days from my request for the stuff to be ready to collect. But I’ve had relatives which issues with their medications and delays etc, better o trace to much and be prepared than run out
 

trophywench

Well-Known Member
Relationship to Diabetes
Type 1
Yeah - it's unnecessary stockpiling, not an extra fortnight's supply, that they're bothered about and always have been. It's really annoyed me when I've had repeat scrips queried by people who don't have the manners to ring me up and say they're just wondering why I need whatever already, when I only had some (date) rather than just not bothering to include it on the scrip so I don't find out till I discover it isn't in the paper bag with the rest of my things and I ring them to ask why.

Being the one tasked with authorising repeat prescriptions that day can be tedious I daresay - however I know very well you take it in turns and it is simply one part of your job. What did you expect to have to do as a GP then if one aspect of it wasn't signing repeat prescriptions for chronically affected people?
 
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