- Provides broader access to FreeStyle Libre system for residents living with diabetes in Ontario and Quebec
- FreeStyle Libre is the first sensor-based glucose monitoring system to be listed in any Canadian provincial health plan
- The technology delivers accurate, real-time glucose readings with a simple scan, eliminating the need for fingersticks
ABBOTT PARK, Ill., Sept. 13, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Abbott (NYSE: ABT), the global leader in sensor-based glucose monitoring, announced today that it has received public reimbursement in Ontario and Quebec for its FreeStyle® Libre system, becoming the first sensor-based glucose monitoring system to be listed by any provincial health plan in Canada. Quebec residents 18 years or older2 and Ontario residents using insulin are eligible for reimbursement under the public programs. With its proven accuracy and ease of use,3 the FreeStyle Libre system replaces traditional blood glucose monitoring and allows patients to dose insulin based on the results.
"For me, I know the only possible way to properly control my diabetes is to check my glucose levels multiple times a day, and the FreeStyle Libre system lets me do that in a quick and simple way," said Montreal resident Anne Pertus, who was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in 2016. "Knowing that the FreeStyle Libre system will be covered by the province is a huge relief for me. My husband is retiring next year and we will no longer have private insurance, so this coverage is critical for me to continue to see the benefits of sensor-based glucose monitoring."
Simple and discreet for those living with diabetes, the FreeStyle Libre system monitors glucose levels continuously through a small sensor worn on the back of the upper arm for up to 14 days. A one-second scan of the sensor with a handheld reader or smartphone4 provides a real-time glucose reading and a complete picture of a person's glucose levels.5 With more than 3 million Canadians living with diabetes,6 today's announcement means that more residents will have access to this innovative technology, which removes the need for painful fingersticks.1
"It's amazing to see how people living with diabetes who use FreeStyle Libre become more engaged in their care – they are seeing their patterns and are coming to me directly with solutions for managing their glucose levels, completely unprompted," said Ken Burns, a certified diabetes educator and pharmacist at the Centre for Complex Care at Health Sciences North/Horizon Santé-Nord in Sudbury, Ontario. "The information my patients are receiving from FreeStyle Libre removes much of the guesswork about what glucose levels are doing that many people living with diabetes are accustomed to, which is truly transformative care."
In 2018, the Diabetes Canada Clinical Practice Guidelines7 recommended technology like the FreeStyle Libre system as an important tool to help patients better manage their diabetes and prevent long-term complications.7 The longest-lasting, self-applied glucose sensor currently available, the FreeStyle Libre system allows users to see comprehensive glucose information, identify glucose trends with a directional arrow and review eight hours of glucose history. Additionally, the FreeStyle LibreLink mobile app is available for people with compatible smartphones4 to obtain their glucose data with a quick scan. Patients and their healthcare professionals can see patterns over time and make adjustments to lifestyle, diet or treatment, as needed.
"Healthcare professionals and patients tell us that the FreeStyle Libre system is life-changing. These reimbursement listings are important for the many Ontario and Quebec residents who rely on provincial health plans to ensure they have access to this breakthrough technology," said Marie-Flore Nabor, general manager of Abbott's diabetes care business in Canada. "Abbott will continue to work with other provincial and territorial governments to make the FreeStyle Libre system more widely available to all Canadians living with diabetes."
Abbott's FreeStyle Libre system was authorized for sale by Health Canada in 2017. As the #1 sensor-based glucose monitoring system used worldwide,8 the FreeStyle Libre system has changed the lives of more than 1.5 million people across 46 countries9 by providing breakthrough technology that is accessible and affordable.10 Abbott has secured partial or full reimbursement for the FreeStyle Libre system in 33 countries, including France, Ireland, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the U.S.
More About the FreeStyle Libre System
The FreeStyle Libre system is indicated for measuring interstitial fluid glucose levels in adults aged 18 years and older. Always read and follow the label/insert for detailed instructions and indication of use.
To learn more about the FreeStyle Libre system, visit www.myfreestyle.ca.
Abbott is a global healthcare leader that helps people live more fully at all stages of life. Our portfolio of life-changing technologies spans the spectrum of healthcare, with leading businesses and products in diagnostics, medical devices, nutritionals and branded generic medicines. Our 103,000 colleagues serve people in more than 160 countries.
1 A finger stick test using a blood glucose meter is required during times of rapidly changing glucose levels when interstitial fluid glucose levels may not accurately reflect blood glucose levels or if hypoglycaemia or impending hypoglycaemia is reported by the system or when symptoms do not match the system readings.
2 For Quebec residents, users will need to have two years of experience in diabetes self-management and use insulin multiple times daily to be eligible for reimbursement. http://www.ramq.gouv.qc.ca/SiteCollectionDocuments/liste_med/2019/liste_med_2019_07_10_en.pdf. Page 50.
3 Data on File. Abbott Diabetes Care.
4 The FreeStyle LibreLink app is compatible with Near-field Communication (NFC) enabled iPhone 7 and higher running iOS 11 or higher.
5 For a complete glycemic picture, scan once every 8 hours.
6 Public Health Agency of Canada. https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/publications/diseases-conditions/diabetes-canada-highlights-chronic-disease-surveillance-system.html. Access June 14, 2019.
7 Houlden, R., L. (2018). 2018 Clinical Practice Guidelines. https://www.diabetes.ca/DiabetesCanadaWebsite/media/Health-care-providers/2018%20Clinical%20Practice%20Guidelines/Ch1-Introduction.pdf. Accessed May 2019.
8 Data on file, Abbott Diabetes Care. Data based on the number of users worldwide for the FreeStyle Libre system compared to the number of users for other leading personal use, sensor-based glucose monitoring systems.
9 Data on file, Abbott Diabetes Care.
10 Based on a comparison of list prices of the FreeStyle Libre system versus other sensor-based glucose monitoring systems. The actual cost to patients may or may not be lower than other sensor-based glucose monitoring systems, depending on the amount covered by insurance, if any.