When Tallangatta resident Philip Waldron was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes 60 years ago, the then 7-year-old felt alone and nervous.
“I remember feeling isolated and apprehensive … I didn’t understand what was going on,” Mr Waldron said.
“Having my first insulin injection was very daunting; however, I had to learn how to do it – it has been my everyday routine for 60 years now.”
Diabetes Australia has presented Mr Waldron with a gold Kellion Victory Medal, for living with diabetes for more than 60 years.
The Kellion Victory Medal was named in honour of the Claude Kellion AM, a Sydney businessman who established a foundation to promote diabetes research after his son died aged 38 from diabetes complications.
Less than 100 years ago, type 1 diabetes was a death sentence: half of the people who developed it died within two years; more than 90 per cent were dead within five years.
Since the introduction of insulin therapy in the 1920s, and numerous advances since then, the long-term survival of those with type 1 diabetes has dramatically improved over the decades.