In part 3 of this Exclusive Interview, Joel Goldsmith explains the use and affordability of the Freestyle Libre system in a conversation with Diabetes in Control Publisher Steve Freed during the ADA meeting in San Diego, California.
Joel Goldsmith is the Senior Director of Digital Platforms at Abbott Diabetes Care where he and his team are focused on designing, developing, and commercializing software-based products and services.
Transcript of this video segment:
Steve Freed — Do you have to calibrate it?
Joel Goldsmith –No, it’s one of the defining differences between the Freestyle Libre sensor and other sensors that are available on the market. It’s factory calibrated, which means that from the time that applied to the body throughout the indicated wear period. They never have to take a finger prick for the purposes of calibrating the sensor.
Steve Freed — That’s a huge advantage. The less they have to do, the better it is because they already have too many things to do on a daily basis.
Joel Goldsmith –It takes us back to those original design principles that I mentioned. Convenience, simplicity, discretion, actionable information and affordability. Those first three are critical in getting people to actually use this. When you think about it, the act of taking a blood glucose measurement, it creates this really interesting paradox because people need to be testing more frequently in order to make informed decisions throughout the course of their day, but they have this built-in deterrent to doing that because every time they use a strip they’re inflicting pain on themselves, which is unnatural for most people. With a sensor, you don’t have to do that and because the way that the Freestyle Libre system works where you simply hold either a proprietary device known as the reader or now in 10 countries a mobile app that runs on an Android phone, you hold that in close proximity to the sensor. In a fraction of a second, you have current glucose, 8 hours of glucose history and a trend arrow indicating the way in which glucose is changing, rising or falling and which direction it’s going. Now there is no deterrent to testing more frequently and the proof of that is some of the real-world data that we published ATTD in February based off of real-world utilization by over 50,000 active Freestyle Libre users. I think it’s over 64 million data points represented and it showed on average users were scanning their sensor more than 16 times for a day, which to me is proof that not only are they interacting with that information much more regularly than they do with strips, but it’s done over a sustained period of time and that’s half the challenge is sustaining those positive behavior changes.
Steve Freed — How affordable is it
Joel Goldsmith –I mean it’s not available for use in the US yet. So pricing in the U.S. is not available.
Steve Freed – But the Pro, Is that affordable?
Joel Goldsmith –Yes, that’s also one of the things that make Freestyle Libre Pro unique compared to other solutions that are available is to start-up cost associated with it and because the sensors are fully disposable and therefore don’t have to be reclaimed by the clinic or cleaned or recharged, they can simply be disposed of after they’ve been used. It enables the clinic to have greater capacity to do more of these procedures. Likewise, the handheld device that is used to retrieve the data from used sensors, instead of it being a one-to-one relationship with the sensor, a single reader can be used across an unlimited number of sensors, both to start then and to retrieve data from used sensors.
Steve Freed — What about reimbursement. I understand it’s reimbursable. Obviously, for physicians, it’s going to take time to download it for whatever reason and to review it. So, is there a reimbursement for using the sensor, number one, and then, is there a reimbursement for looking at it and making decisions?
Joel Goldsmith –That’s one of the reasons why the Freestyle Libre Pro system has been adopted so quickly. In fact I think in the first six months of its existence it’s now become the number-one prescribed professional-use CGM system and it’s in part because reimbursement already existed for that procedure type. So, both for the placement of the sensor and its subsequent activation but also the download of the data once that sensors been used for up to 14 days. So there’s two different codes that are used to request reimbursement for those different operations within that procedure.