THE family of a diabetic teenager given a new lease of life thanks to a revolutionary piece of medical technology have thanked the hospital which provided it.
Fifteen-year-old Hayley Judd was diagnosed diabetic when she was six years old and had to learn to give herself twice-daily injections, and she has been in and out of hospital all her life.
Hayley, who has lived with her father, Steve Judd, and stepmother Debbie in Hill End Road for the past year, after moving from Bognor Regis where she lived with her mother, was prevented from enjoying foods such as chocolates or chips by her condition.
She admits that as she got older she secretly stopped injecting insulin to lose weight, became very ill and eventually had to increase her medication to three tablets a day and four injections.
But all this was solved when she was given a portable pump to administer her medication.
Mrs Judd, who runs the Happy Families toddler group at Harefield Community Centre, in Priory Avenue, said: "Since Hayley moved in her diabetic condition has been looked after by Hillingdon hospital, where Dr Rowan Hillson manages her case with Nigel Thorpe, her diabetic paediatric nurse.
"Nigel is an amazing person who took time to educate me on her condition, and he put Hayley forward for funding for the portable pump, which was fitted very recently under the supervision of a doctor from Great Ormond Street."
Hayley's previous hospital in Chichester also recommended the device, which automatically puts insulin into her system. However, the local health authority would not fund it and the £6,000 cost, plus £1,000 a year to maintain, was too high for her family.
Hayley said: "The pump is brilliant, only the size of a mobile phone, and it can be taken off for an hour at a time so I can shower and swim. Before I have a meal I tap in the carbohydrates I plan to have, and the right amount of insulin is automatically pumped into my system.
"It is amazing, brilliant, and I am so much happier in myself. I used to wake up groggy, but now I wake up thinking 'another day without injections'. I can even eat chocolate now - in moderation!"
Mrs Judd said: "It really has changed Hayley's life around and we felt it would be nice to thank Hillingdon Hospital for their exceptional care for Hayley in the last year, and to let other young people who suffer the same condition know how it works, and maybe to consider it for themselves.
"It's always nice to have happy ending stories in the paper."