The new technology automatically determines how much insulin is administered via a pump using a glucose sensor placed under the skin.
Health experts claim that, in the absence of a cure, it is the best method for managing diabetes.
How does it work?
Approximately 29,000 children and 400,000 adults in the UK now suffer from type 1 diabetes. Their pancreas generates very little or no insulin, a crucial hormone that aids with converting food into energy.
This new device automatically simulates the function of a pancreas, though it still needs data on food intake to function properly.
In order for the artificial pancreas to work, a sensor is placed under the skin to automatically measure blood sugar (glucose) levels.
Then readings are sent wirelessly to a pump which calculates the amount of insulin required. Users can monitor readings on a smartphone, which also allows them to input the amount of carbohydrates being eaten at meals.
With the help of the new tech, people with type 1 diabetes may now live their daily lives without worrying about whether their blood sugar levels are dangerously high or low.
Why does it only target type 1 diabetes?
Type 2 diabetes, which is significantly more frequent, is not the same as type 1 diabetes. While both conditions result in elevated blood-glucose levels, type 1 is an auto-immune disorder where the body assaults pancreatic cells.
As a result of the body's cells developing insulin resistance in type 2 diabetes patients, more insulin is required to maintain normal blood-glucose levels. Usually, diet, exercise, and careful observation can regulate it. It is more tricky with type 1 diabetes.
How much will it cost the NHS?
The technology currently costs nearly £6,000 but National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) says it is negotiating a price for the NHS that “is fair to taxpayers”.
The UK regulator, the MHRA, has approved the use of the technology, which is already being implemented in Scotland.