Insulin Discovery Centenary

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 1st September 2021.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Sandesh Gulhane Sandesh Gulhane Conservative

Absolutely—social prescribing is a very important part of general practitioners’ armoury. It is about getting patients to understand the importance of eating well or being able to exercise. People think that exercise is going to the gym and sweating and feeling horrible at the end of that session, but that is not what we mean when we encourage them to exercise. We are talking about them just going for a walk and enjoying it. NHS Lothian can use social prescribing to refer patients to get that exercise. The profession can take that forward, and I hope that the Scottish Government supports what I am doing to help prevent people from contracting type 2 diabetes.

The invention of insulin by Drs Macleod and Banting has, quite simply, saved millions of lives. It is a testament to how amazing the discovery is that, 100 years on, it is still the mainstay of treatment and is, rightly, being lauded in the Parliament as a medical miracle. However, let us not pat ourselves on the back. Let us try to reduce and prevent new cases of type 2 diabetes. That would be a legacy that Drs Macleod and Banting would be proud of.