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Type 1 diabetes is not a priority for coronavirus vaccines in Massachusetts, but type 2 is eligible

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Ruth Groff is afraid to get infected with COVID-19 and land in the hospital, mainly because of her diabetes.

Glof, now 57, who has been a type 1 diabetic since she was only 5 years old, wears a continuous blood glucose monitor and injects insulin at least twice a day. Although she is healthy, pandemic stress can further disrupt her blood sugar levels and requires special attention.

If Grof had type 2 diabetes, she would qualify for the coronavirus vaccine ahead of the general public in Massachusetts.

But type 1 diabetes List of Eligible Medical Conditions In Phase 2, new studies are underway, despite showing that Type 1 people are at increased risk of hospitalization and death compared to Type 2 people.

“It’s immeasurable. I can’t imagine what the rationale is,” Groff said. “I stayed inside and tried not to meet anyone, but I found that in Massachusetts it was actually considered perfectly healthy and free of comorbidities.”

Massachusetts Lists Eligible Medical Comorbidities List of underlying diseases at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention When adults are infected with COVID-19, they are at increased risk of serious illness. The group includes type 2 diabetes, where the body develops insulin resistance. However, type 1 diabetes, in which the body completely stops producing insulin, is listed as a condition that may only increase the risk of serious consequences, and is excluded from the list in Massachusetts as follows: I will. New York And Tennessee Prioritized both types.

The exclusion of type 1 diabetes surprised 24-year-old Natalia Mesity, who was diagnosed as a third-year college student.

“I’m a little annoyed because type 1 diabetes is autoimmune and should be taken very seriously. Type 2 should do so,” said a current Dochester resident from East Long Meadow. I will. “There should be no dispute over which type of diabetes should be vaccinated.”

About 1 in 10 Americans have diabetes. Type 2 is much more common, but about 10% of Type 1 diabetics make up about 1.6 million people.

Dr. Elizabeth Halprin, clinical director of adult diabetes at the Joslin Diabetes Center, said that excluding people with type 1 diabetes does not consider it a “passive act.”

“I don’t think they were forgotten, I think they were actively omitted,” Halprin said. “They should have the same priorities as people with type 2 diabetes.”

The Boston-based Joslin Diabetes Center is one of a local and national group with more than 5,000 people. change.org petition — Encourage both the state and the CDC to revisit the classification of type 1 diabetes based on a new study showing an equally increased risk of hospitalization and death between the two types. A recent study published in The Lancet Medical Journal found that the risk of dying from coronavirus was nearly three times higher in people with type 1 diabetes and about twice higher in people with type 2 diabetes than in people without diabetes. I have.

“Clinical evidence clearly shows that people with type 1 are at increased risk of serious health outcomes and death from COVID-19 and should be given equal priority to people with type 2 diabetes,” said the American Diabetes Association. The Association of Dr. Robert Gabey, Chief of Science and Medical Care, said in an email.

ADA and 18 other groups I sent a letter to the CDC Last month, he asked government agencies to update their guidance, writing that “distinguishing between the two states is problematic” when accessing potentially life-threatening shots.

Mr Gabay said Friday that the CDC did not respond to the letter. Advocacy activity in Massachusetts hasn’t produced any results, even if the state adds another condition that was initially excluded — asthma — On the list of vaccinations for people with two or more eligible medical conditions.

“The numbers are alarming,” Gabbay said. “This pandemic has serious implications for diabetics, and the state plans to protect people at the highest risk of fatal complications, so it needs to be prioritized.”

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