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What barriers do you face in getting the right diabetes care?

We know that getting the right diabetes care in South Africa isn’t always easy. So we asked our community of South Africans with Diabetes to share with us: What barriers do you face in getting the right diabetes care?
Here’s what they said:

Barriers to diabetes care:

Everything to do with diabetes is expensive, especially treatments, medication, food.

Sandra Dubois

Everything is so expensive, especially food.

Priscilla Krishna

With trying so hard to keep a good and healthy lifestyle, especially if you have kids that have diabetes, the expense doesn’t always allow it. But you have no choice but to make ways and means. I really wish that our Government could see this chronic disease needs a disability grant, each and every one. It can at least be a bit of help in many cases for many people.

Nuroenisa Bailey

Medical aid not paying for my sensors. Thus, every month I need to pay out of my own pocket for something that is so vital to me as a Type 1 diabetic. Since I’ve been using my sensors, I have not had one hypo.

Marilize Lotz

Unfortunately I do not live like a diabetic because I can’t. Haven’t seen a doctor in over 2 years and I refuse to go to a government hospital. I get the same insulin and supplies from a wonderful support group. Food I eat like a normal person and hope for the best. Since my medical aid was cut I’ve been battling but I’m a Warrior and I survive the War… Everyday 💙

Calista Ava Skye

Time. Time is my problem. It is difficult to get time off work and I need to use my leave days. Wish I could rather claim sick days.

Elré Clarence

I see so many people saying ‘food’ or ‘diabetic food’ I really hope you aren’t all falling victim to these ‘diabetic friendly foods’ that are so expensive on the market. Everything in moderation 🙂

Kim Shaw

With some doctors… judgement.

Kemantha Govender

When you can’t afford medical aid and have to rely on the state for help.
And some doctors thinking that they know all, but haven’t lived a day themselves with diabetes.

Nicolene Maritz

Money! R1000 plus to get blood tests done and another R1000 to see a specialist!

Ruth McMullen

Restaurants need to offer more variety of low carb and sugar free foods. They also need to state ingredients used on their menus, especially the use of flour and sugar in meals and sauces. They are usually quite good at pointing out gluten free and low GI meals, but that is useless to a diabetic.

Desiré van Niekerk

I wish that medical aids had better options to tailor your needs for your diabetes. As things stand, they really are doing the bare minimum. At least that’s my experience.

Pj Goussard

Supplements for diabetics are crazy expensive.

Bettina Morris

It is very expensive, difficult to afford, food is my main issue.

Psalm Psalm

Diabetes food it’s expensive… but I’m taking it one step at a time.

Oupa Dubazana

Financially everything is too expensive. It’s quite difficult to maintain having snacks in between meals yet alone having 3 full meals a day 🥺🥺🥺.
And being able to find comfortable shoes, test strips.
💔💔💔 The list for me is endless.

Tselane Hlanyane

Budget to get necessary medication and that small machine to test the blood glucose.

Ditshibane Mojalefa Abram

Budget to afford the right tools, including foods, sensors etc.

Rashaad Bastra

Food is very expensive.

Phumzile Mkhonza

Medical aid not covering insulin.

Ashleigh Bailey

It’s difficult when you on pension, the medication 💊 is expensive and to go to the Government hospitals is just ridiculous!! You will not get all your medication 💊 as you have to take what they give you! They always seem to be out of stock! So I buy my medication 💊 every month, as my husband puts it into the budget 🫣 So unfortunately when you a pensioner or don’t have medical aid, that’s a HUGE BARRIER 🫣

Sharon Fourie

Craving chips 🍟

Mokgolwane Moafrika Manoto

Money, good care and food, even meds are so expensive.

Alicia Nagessar

Everything is hell.

Pauline Shula Moonga

It’s expensive being diabetic.

Lebo Maruping

What about you? What barriers do you face when it comes to your diabetes care?

We are working on many of these issues as SA Diabetes Advocacy – advocating for better care for people with diabetes in South Africa. Please join us if you want to help!

What to read next?

What is behaviour change? Here’s a simple explanation – and why you should care: It probably won’t surprise you to learn that behaviour change is exactly what it sounds like – changing your behaviour. Specifically, changing your personal habits and attitudes for a reason.

What is diabetes burnout?: Diabetes burnout is common in people with diabetes (both Type 1 and Type 2) and for good reason – it’s a chronic condition. Chronic as in forever, never giving you a break, never giving you a holiday, never giving you a moment’s rest.

How to help during diabetes burnout: Diabetes burnout is unavoidable, when you’re living with diabetes. But how can you help during diabetes burnout? What can you offer someone you love who is struggling?

Photo by Siora Photography and Dim Hou on Unsplash

What to read next
Join South Africans with Diabetes on Facebook

Join our diabetes community

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Sweet Life is a registered NPO/PBO (220-984) with a single goal: to improve diabetes in South Africa. We are funded by sponsorships and donations from aligned companies and organisations who believe in our work. We only share information that we believe benefits our community. While some of this information is linked to specific brands, it is not an official endorsement of that brand. We believe in empowering people with diabetes to make the best decisions they can, to live a healthy, happy life with diabetes.