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Extended glucose monitoring coverage saves Summerland man more than $5,000 a year

British Columbia is the first province to reimburse people with diabetes using monitoring system
Bryan Slater has been using the DexcomG6 for around three years. The device helps him monitor his diabetes. British Columbia has now expanded BC PharmaCare coverage for this technology. (Contributed)

Bryan Slater of Summerland use to have to pay $5,200 a year for technology that helped him to monitor his glucose to manage his diabetes.

Now, thanks to a decision by British Columbia’s provincial government, Slater and others with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes will have easier access to the Dexcom G6 continuous glucose monitor program.

The decision, announced in June, expands BC PharmaCare coverage for this technology.

Thirty-four-year-old Slater was pleased with the decision after using DexcomG6 for around three years.

“This device is going to be available to more people,” he said.

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The Dexcom G6 includes a small, wearable sensor that measures glucose just below the skin; a transmitter to continuously and wirelessly send glucose levels to a display device, and a compatible smart device or receiver that displays real-time glucose data to users without the need for finger sticks or scanning.

These devices can improve diabetes management and quality of life for both the patient and their caregivers, increasing confidence and reducing stress by making blood glucose readings easier to obtain.

Using the device has improved both Slater’s work and personal life as well as his health. The technology connects to an Apple device and provides him with information about his insulin levels.

“It’s going to alert me prior to a low and prior to a high glucose level,” he said. “It’s definitely made a positive impact. It’s allowed me to focus on life rather than my diabetes.”

Slater was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when he was around six years old and has had to monitor his glucose levels since that time.

The Dexcom G6 system is effective, but it is also expensive since it has a subscription basis and a monthly fee.

It is estimated that more than 520,000 people in British Columbia are diagnosed with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. There are estimates that another million people in the province have undiagnosed Type 2 diabetes or prediabetes.

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John Arendt

About the Author: John Arendt

John Arendt has worked as a journalist for more than 30 years. He has a Bachelor of Applied Arts in Journalism degree from Ryerson Polytechnical Institute.
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