Fire engine technician is among the first for “life changing” diabetes technology

A fire service technician has said the latest diabetes technology is “life changing” as he becomes one of the first in Yorkshire to use it.

Simon Pickering uses the latest diabetes technology

Simon Pickering works at West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) helping to maintain all the vehicles, which include fire engines, the wildfire 4x4 vehicles, boats and command units.

Since he’s been two-years-old, he’s lived with diabetes, which has involved having to control his insulin every day through injections and pumps.

However, recently the 32-year-old was told that he would be one of the first people in Yorkshire to access to latest technology in diabetic medicine, the Omnipod 5.

The device sits on his arm, leg or stomach and works off Bluetooth to test his blood levels every five minutes and then administer insulin if needed.

The father-of-one from Leeds said the technology has been life changing: “When you have diabetes it’s a daily battle that isn’t just about eating the right food but taking into account so many other factors that can affect insulin, such as stress, emotions and even hot weather.

“As a child I would have injections. Then the technology improved, and I went onto an insulin pump, which is what I’ve been on for about ten years.

“When the time came to replace my last pump I was told I could be one of the first people in Yorkshire to have this new technology – and I jumped at the chance.

“Using the technology has really has been life changing and a lot of people are desperate to get on it.”

Simon has been working at WYFRS for six years, before that he worked with the police as a special constable, responding to 999 calls.

“Since being on this diabetes technology my blood sugars have changed so much and are under control – which is important in preventing future illnesses,” said Simon.

“I’m getting more sleep at night because my blood sugar is being kept constant, and it’s waterproof so I can take my five-year-old daughter swimming without worrying about it – this technology will change so many people’s lives for the better.”