Contour to Accucheck...fight or switch?


#1

I’ve been using a Contour meter for a while now because it came out on top in a test of accuracy that I saw. My insurance has sent me a letter notifying me that, as of 2019, I will only be able to get Accu-check strips.

I’m assuming that I could probably appeal and ask for an exemption from the Accu-check only rule. I don’t know if I would succeed, but I could try.

Do you think it’s worth my putting in the time to try to get the insurance to pay for Contour strips or is the difference in accuracy (if any) not really great enough for it to be worth making a stink?

I can’t remember where I saw the meter accuracy comparison which crowned Contour the champ, but it was done a couple years ago, so there may be more recent comparisons.


#2

You may be remembering this meter accuracy survey published by the Diabetes Technology Society.

Here are the results from the six of the 18 meters that passed the test. The Roche Accu-Check meters (2) were amongst the ones that passed. I’ve been using the Roche Accu-Chek Aviva Connect meter along with its Aviva Plus test strips for several years now. I’m happy with the results. Although the Contour Next system rated #1, I think the Roche system is comparable. While I don’t often step down from a fight with the diabetes money mongers, in this case, I would switch and save myself the grief!


#3

Thank you so much for finding that survey. 97% or 98% does seem just fine.


#4

I think the determinant would be whether there is any integration between your meter & pump. I use the Contour Next Link because it is integrated with my Medtronic 670G pump, and is used as the communication device between my computer and pump when uploading my CGM data and pump settings. It is also able to send my BG tests directly to my pump (rather than needing to manually enter them). Because of all this integration, it is what my insurer (and doctors) prefer that I use. Even though all these functions could be done with another device or manually, the integration is a big convenience. I am not trying to express an opinion or be biased, I am simply saying that if you use your meter and pump completely independent of each other, just use whatever they are willing to give you. However, if your meter has integration with other stuff (pump or anywhere you upload data to), then the fight is definitely worth the trouble.


#5

You make a good point, @njsokalski. I use the Accu-Chek Connect meter and it can wirelessly connect with a Roche BG app on my iPhone. What I didn’t realize, for quite some time, is that the BG data is also logged in the iPhone Health Data app which is then forwarded to my Loop app and influences the BG calculations made by Loop. I especially appreciate this during the two-hour Dexcom blackout period each week.

Do you have any other devices integrated with your Contour Next meter, @Tnyc?


#6

No, it’s not integrated with anything. I just went with Contour for the accuracy. It’s great to know about Accu-Check’s wireless connectivity with an iPhone.


#7

A while ago I spent some time and strips vetting the Accu-Chek Guide against my Contour Next One. The bottom line is my sample fifty or so side-by-side readings almost always came in within five points of each other and both scored high in terms of repeatability. (Is that really a word?) I liked the Guide, the test strips are in a clever dispenser, and it uploads nicely to Glooko, Diasend and mySugr. But it’s incompatible with Tidepool at this point. The Accu-Chek app is also incompatible with my Android Google Pixel 2 smartphone. I’d probably have gone with the Guide if I could have used it with Tidepool.


#8

I had been using a Contour meter for years and was forced to change to an Accu-Chek meter in order to meet insurance demand.

I have not been happy with the change. It is not a matter of accuracy, it is other factors. I don’t like the test strips. They are flimsy, stick together, and cost more.

They not only cost ME more, the portion my insurance pays is also higher. Why in the world would they require us to use something that costs both of us more money?

I don’t have any reason other than personal preference to seek an appeal so I just continue to use the required Accu-Chek and stay annoyed. :frowning_face: