HRH The Duchess of Cornwall visits Addenbrooke’s Hospital to see progress on the artificial pancreas

Posted on 27 November 2018

JDRF President, HRH The Duchess of Cornwall with Professor Hovorka

Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall has visited Addenbrooke’s Hospital to see the world-leading type 1 diabetes technology being developed there by Professor Roman Hovorka.

The Duchess, who is President of JDRF, was accompanied by Chief Executive of JDRF in the UK, Karen Addington. Together they visited Professor Hovorka’s research facility where she was introduced to Rob Hewlett, an adult patient who has been helping with the artificial pancreas trials and Janet Allen, a clinical research nurse.

The Duchess then met JDRF supporters Sky News presenter Stephen Dixon and JDRF Youth Ambassadors George Dove and Amy Wilton. The Duchess previously met George and Amy when she visited Addenbrooke’s in February 2012.

The Duchess was also handed a posy of flowers by George Vinnicombe, aged seven. George was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when he was six months old. George and his sister Ava, five, also presented Her Royal Highness with cards they made.

The Duchess of Cornwall with George and Ava Vinnicombe
George and Ava Vinnicombe with HRH The Duchess of Cornwall

Her Royal Highness has been President of JDRF in the UK for over five years and during this time has met many individuals and families affected by type 1 diabetes, as well as the scientists and researchers working to cure, treat and prevent the condition, supported by JDRF.

Professor Hovorka has been developing the artificial pancreas since 2006 with research funded by JDRF and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) at the NIHR Cambridge Biomedical Research Centre.

The artificial pancreas is now in advanced human trials after being found to be better at helping people with type 1 diabetes manage their blood glucose levels by keeping them in range 65% of time, compared with 54% of the time without the technology. A prototype of the artificial pancreas is currently being trialled across six centres in the UK including the NIHR Cambridge Clinical Research Facility.