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MBABANE – The lives of hundreds of diabetic patients are in danger as government hospitals have run out of insulin injection.

The injection that is currently not available is known as Actrapid, which is vital for patients to allow glucose to enter the blood cells.
If not administered timely, a patient could die.

When this newspaper visited the Mbabane Government Hospital yesterday, some of the patients confirmed that they had been advised to purchase the medication from local pharmacies. Making it worse is the fact that some of the most trusted pharmacies in the capital city did not have the injection and the patients were advised to place orders and wait till next week.

Another challenge is that the drug costs over E200, with one pharmacy confirming that it was selling for E517 and that there was no time frame on how long it lasted as it depended on what the doctors had prescribed. It has been gathered that the patients have not been able to get the medication for close to two weeks and that government was still waiting for stock.

Information from reliable sources is that the shortage is caused by government’s failure to pay the supplier who was awarded the tender to supply the injection.
The sources said the relevant ministry was waiting for its budget allocation to pay the supplier.

“The supplier has stopped supplying us, so right now there is no stock because the hospitals have depleted even the buffer stock that was left. The suppliers who were awarded the tenders cannot deliver if they are not paid, so it is a big problem especially because there are other departments that are facing the same problem,” the source said.

Diabetes is a group of diseases that affect the body’s ability to produce or use insulin, a hormone that allows your body to turn glucose into energy. Diabetes can be effectively managed, but potential complications include heart disease, stroke, and kidney damage.
With diabetes being a disease in which the body does not produce enough insulin to control the blood glucose or when the body is unable to use insulin effectively, Actrapid is replacement insulin that is very similar to the one made by the pancreas.

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