The recent topic of “Why does insulin require a prescription in the US?” got me thinking about a similar topic: Why do pump and CGM supplies, and many other DME supplies, require a prescription? I can see some small logic in requiring a prescription for the pump itself perhaps for training purposes, but requiring one for the supplies just seems ridiculous. Same for CPAP supplies. I definitely don’t think someone should have to have a prescription to buy a CGM and related supplies. Even if you aren’t diabetic and for whatever reason wanted to track your blood sugar 24/7, why would that be a problem?
Whatever the reason I bet its related to companies making money.
Perhaps if one is overly concerned about their bg’s it might behoove them to get an appointment with a doc and perhaps get some lab tests done. It doesn’t make sense for non-diabetics to be using this tech any more so than I should get a defibrillator implanted in my chest. Can u imagine the uproar by diabetics unable to get supplies because of a world-wide shortage because every paranoid person on the planet wants to know their glucose values 24/7? oh wait, their already is a shortage!!!
It is not quite the same as a defibrillator, as that is something that makes a substantial physical effect to a critical organ. I agree it doesn’t make sense for a non-diabetic to get one, but that isn’t reason enough in itself to restrict the sale of them.
As far as shortages go, I don’t believe that would truly be a problem. The vast majority of people, even paranoid ones, would not want to deal with the headache of wearing a CGM sensor, let alone the cost. You would not end the restriction overnight in the first place, especially in the middle of a shortage. I am sure that Dexcom and other CGM manufacturers could plan their manufacturing to take into account the expected demand. Possibly even better than now since they would not be relying on doctors to be the gatekeepers to their product. If anything, the fact that there is a shortage right now just goes to show that requiring a prescription doesn’t necessarily prevent one.
How about… so the doctors can make more money?
I buy my supplies independent from my endo. All he does is write a prescription I ask for and send it in to the supplier I request.
I agree with ChrisP it is a money grab. Can you imagine if you could just order it from Amazon? Cut out the PBM entirely.
Yeah, I do find it strange that every 4 years if you want a new pump, you need a new prescription. It’s not like my diabetes went away! And you would think the pump won’t work if you don’t have supplies to use it, so why the different prescription. I would guess like all things related to insurance healthcare, it’s all about the money and is everyone getting their share. It’s like those on Medicare who have to see their doctor every 3 months. I mean, my doctor and I are talking about making my visit every 6-8 months now due to the fact with all my new equipment, there isn’t really any need.
Agree! If it was ordered for you, you should be able to reorder supplies as needed…at least for a year. I am having to get authorizations at every delivery (3 months). Also saw that Dexcom and others want to market to the population at large - I think it is coming and will make it easier for us to get our stuff. I hate the waits for authorization and delivery. Cigna just went to being able to get your supplies (Dexcom, not pump) at local pharmacy (March 2019). I havn’t used it yet. I remember being able to get insulin over the counter and pump supplies at my pharmacy w/ a script as needed in the 1990’s.
All prescriptions have an expiration. Some of mine are good for a year. Others are good for just 6 months. It makes no sense to expect a life-long Rx to enable ordering pump model after pump model over the years.