Good news for women with type 1 diabetes

Continuous glucose monitors are small wearable devices that measure interstitial blood glucose level continuously.

It can sound alarms and send warnings if glucose levels are getting too low or too high. The devices reduce the number of daily finger prick checks. CGM is a life changing technology that can reduce the number of events of dangerously low blood glucose level. Also, it is great for people with needle phobia. It gives enough information that can help people who lives with diabetes to manage their blood glucose level and having the opportunity to hopefully make the right choices.

Continuous glucose monitors were first subsidised in April 2017 for children and young people with type 1 diabetes but this was limited to those under 21 years of age. From today, thanks to a $100 million expansion of the Federal Government’s Continuous Glucose Monitoring Funding Initiative the subsidised access has been expanded to include women with type 1 diabetes who are actively planning pregnancy, pregnant, or immediately post-pregnancy.

Pregnancy can bring serious risks for both mother and baby related to glucose levels. CGM will help these women with type 1 diabetes to have a safe journey during pregnancy. However, the person must meet the criteria in one of the following categories:

Category A – Pre-pregnancy

An authorised health professional like endocrinologist, credentialed diabetes educator or other registered health professional specialised in diabetes such as physician or nurse practitioner may certify eligibility for an initial 6-month period.  This is on the basis of the person seeking active pre-pregnancy care and committing to regular engagement with the pre-conception care service provider. Women who are actively trying to conceive should have regular visits with pre-conception care services at least every 6-8 weeks.

An authorised health professional may certify eligibility for a further 6-month period (up to a maximum period of 12 months) may be authorised if the woman is continuing trying to conceive.

Currently, women diagnosed with gestational diabetes who do not have type 1 diabetes are not eligible to access CGM through the NDSS.

Category B – Pregnant/Post-Pregnancy

For women with type 1 diabetes who are pregnant and regularly visit a health professional such as an endocrinologist, they will need an authorised health professional to certify eligibility that will continue until 3 months after the expected due date of the baby.

Women will need to complete an Eligibility Assessment Form, which can be found at www.ndss.com.au/forms

For more information call the NDSS Helpline on 1300 136 588.

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