Norman Lamb, 23rd August 2018.

Norman Lamb, 23rd August 2018.

          Norman Lamb, Liberal Democrat MP for North Norfolk.

Norman was welcomed on 23rd August after recovering well from his health scare a few months previous and began his talk light- heartedly by mentioning he had received a letter from a constituent offering advice and useful tips on how to improve his job as an MP, a position he has held for the past seventeen years.

As part of his annual village tour Norman is holding twenty two open air advice surgeries around North Norfolk’s villages, from Tuesday 28th to Thursday 30th August, something he has done for the past seventeen years. Any issues or concerns can be raised with him at the surgeries with no appointment needed.

A debate in Parliament was led by Norman to highlight unacceptable delays at the East of England Ambulance Service with people in North Norfolk waiting a long time for an ambulance. Care in the first hour is crucial for people suffering from strokes and for that person to be in hospital within that time frame does not happen that often therefore threatening their recovery. Vast improvements are needed to the emergency system and to discourage people from misusing the ambulance service with unnecessary call outs.

Norman Lamb has called for an independent cross-party commission to examine the future of the NHS and social care system. Health and care services are facing a massive crisis as a result of financial and demographic pressures. It is widely accepted that there will be a funding gap of £30bn in the NHS by 2020, and a shortfall of around £6bn in social care, which will have serious consequences for patient care. Norman argues that these pressures are now so severe that all parties must come together to fundamentally re-think how we can guarantee the future of the NHS and social care system.

Diabetes is on the increase with a 40% increase in children being diagnosed in the last four years, with support and treatment being a postcode lottery for all of those diagnosed be it children or adults.

One piece of equipment which would hugely benefit those with diabetes is the Freestyle Libre Flash Glucose Monitoring System and although approved by NICE and made available on the NHS it is once again a postcode lottery whether it is funded by your local CCG or not. Unfortunately at the moment the CCG for North Norfolk does not do so but apparently a decision for the future will be made in September 2018.

Using Flash Glucose Monitoring may benefit people in certain jobs where finger-prick testing is not always practical and they struggle to test regularly.

People with diabetes have reported how Flash GM supports them to carry on with their daily lives, (sports, work, performances, and exercise) with greater ease and confidence.

Flash GM also has a number of benefits that can improve people’s diabetes clinical outcomes over and above glucose testing. It provides data to support someone’s self-management of their condition and can improve their quality of life.

It can provide freedom to test more frequently, reducing the need for painful, stressful and inconvenient finger prick glucose monitoring.

Reduce costs associated with glucose test strips.

Give more confidence in managing diabetes as there is more data to base decisions on.

Prevent false high readings resulting from performing a blood test using unwashed hands.

The ability to see trends when blood sugar levels are starting to rise or drop, so action can be taken earlier.

Enable the user to improve their HbA1c and reduce fluctuation in blood glucose

levels. This can help to prevent future health complications and in turn this would save the NHS the cost of treating those complications and provide better health outcomes.


The number of Newly Diagnosed support sessions, which are attended by various committee members of the Group to provide information leaflets and moral support, have dropped dramatically over the last twelve months. When this was mentioned to Norman he dictated a letter to the CCG at the meeting, the outcome of which we look forward to hearing.

A well received question and answer session then followed.