The primary objective of the campaign was to make the Ministry of Health of the Czech Republic to stop the shortened revision of insulin and initiate an in-depth review taking into account the differences between human and analogue insulins. This goal has been achieved through intense communication with objective arguments.
The campaign has been very successful and brought 2 televised reportages, 4 national newspapers and 11 news web sites put attention to the theme during the two days of communication. Even thanks to the wide-ranging media coverage of the topic, the targets were met and the short revision of insulin reimbursement was halted.
In May 2014, the State Institute for Drug Control (SÚKL) commenced the shortened revision of the reimbursement of short-acting and premixed insulin. This step was threatened by a direct impact on Czech diabetics - a rapid increase in surcharges for insulin or a risk of worsening treatment for a quarter of diabetic patients in the Czech Republic who would be forced to switch to cheaper and less effective human insulin therapy. In response to this event, the Union of Diabetics of the Czech Republic and other organizations associating diabetes patients expressed their public disagreement with the SÚKL procedure and took steps to ensure that this revision is immediately stopped. At this stage, the Union of Diabetics addressed us with the requirement for providing crisis communication and organizing a press conference.
„Insulin treatment is life-saving and irreplaceable in type 1 diabetic patients, as well as in many people with type 2 diabetes. For insulin analogues that significantly reduce the incidence of hypoglycaemia, patients pay up approximately 10 crowns per pack. However, following the procedure of the State Institute for Drug Control, this situation should be changed dramatically to the detriment of diabetics. With the support of Focus Agency, we have managed to stop the change and maintain the availability of the treatment for all diabetics.“
We delved into the issue quickly and on June 26, 2014, two days after the assignment, we held a press conference attended by key media from the health sector with an overlap in economic reporting. Then we started intensive communicating statements of concerned patient organizations in all relevant media types. A large number of media outputs has emerged and triggered a debate in the appropriate institutions.