People living with type one diabetes will soon have free access to the FreeStyle Libre flash glucose monitoring system.

The Federal Government is investing $300 million in the Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) Initiative. The FreeStyle Libre measures glucose levels without the use of lancets, test strips and blood, which will make life a lot easier for those who live with type 1 diabetes.

Without Government subsidy, the cost would be $92.50 every two weeks for the FreeStyle Libre flash glucose monitoring system – over $2,400 per year,” Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan said.

A sensor worn on the back of the arm connects to a reader or mobile phone application, which in turn stores glucose levels day and night to help people manage their diabetes, and avoid dangerous hypoglycaemia and hyperglycaemia.

The government is also streamlining the eligibility criteria, to increase the number of Australians who can access fully subsidised glucose monitoring devices through the CGM scheme to 58,000 people, up from 37,000. This will be achieved by simplifying the clinical criteria for people with type 1 diabetes aged 21 years or older, and who have concessional status.

From March the Government will provide fully-subsidised CGM products to a wider range of Australians, including:

  • Children and young people, under 21 years of age, with type 1 diabetes.
  • Children and young people with conditions very similar to type 1 diabetes, such as cystic fibrosis-related diabetes and neonatal diabetes, who require insulin.
  • Women with type 1 diabetes who are planning for pregnancy, pregnant, or immediately post-pregnancy.
  • People with type 1 diabetes aged 21 years or older and who have concessional status.

“The introduction of FreeStyle Libre will increase the range of products available to support Australians with diabetes from 1 March 2020,” Mr Hogan said.

“The government is committed to supporting Australians with type 1 diabetes, investing over $300 million over four years from 2019-20 in the CGM Initiative.”