Pharmac signals first step towards funding continuous glucose monitors

Media release Medicines

Te Pātaka Whaioranga - Pharmac will soon be seeking competitive commercial offers for the supply of funded Continuous Glucose Monitors (CGMs) in New Zealand.

“Today we have issued a Future Procurement Opportunity for CGMs, insulin pumps, and insulin pump consumables(external link),” says Pharmac’s Director of Operations Lisa Williams. “This is a preliminary stage in government procurement processes which signals to the supplier market, and New Zealanders, that we are getting closer to considering funding CGMs and gives time to the suppliers to prepare their pricing proposals.”

“We have heard from people living with diabetes, their whānau and the healthcare sector that CGMs are an important tool for monitoring blood glucose levels, and we agree. Our assessment of these devices, using our Factors for Consideration and the advice we’ve received from our Diabetes Advisory Committee, reflects this.”

“Pharmac has said that we want to fund CGMs for some time, subject to available funding.  Significant budget uplifts from the Government mean that, depending on pricing offered by suppliers, we think funding CGMs may be possible.

“We have completed our assessment of three different CGMs for type 1 diabetes, and they are all on our Options for Investment list. Details of our assessments of the Dexcom(external link), the FreeStyle Libre(external link) and Medtronic CGMs(external link) are available on our application tracker.  Suppliers of other brands of CGMs will be able to participate in the procurement process.

“At this stage, the details of funding such as brand, eligibility criteria or a timeframe for funding has not been determined – we realise there are lots of potential options so will be looking for the best way to achieve funding of these products for New Zealanders. As our procurement activity progresses Pharmac will work with the diabetes community and share more information with the wider public,” concludes Ms Williams.

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CGM devices can be used independently of insulin pumps, and some CGMs can be integrated with insulin pumps, so alongside CGMs, Pharmac also intends to include insulin pumps and consumables in the Future Procurement Opportunity (FPO). These products are already funded for New Zealanders with type 1 diabetes who meet certain eligibility criteria.

Pharmac is required to undertake a fair procurement process when there are multiple suppliers who could supply products. Our FPO signals that Pharmac will be releasing a request for proposals (RFP) for CGMs, insulin pumps and consumables in the coming months.

About Future Procurement Opportunities (FPOs)