This week, Dexcom announced a new sampling program named “Hello Dexcom.” The program will allow healthcare professionals to order one-time samples of the Dexcom G6 to distribute to patients, free of charge.
Doctors will be encouraged to distribute the free samples as they see fit. In other words, the samples will not be limited to patients with Type 1 diabetes, the core population using the device today. Anyone that is interested in tracking and optimizing their blood glucose, with or without diabetes, can benefit from the program.
If you’ve been curious about CGM technology, or hesitant to splurge on the new system, this could be a terrific opportunity to take it for a test drive.
Dexcom has received raves for its groundbreaking G6, the most advanced continuous glucose monitor (CGM) on the market. Many patients with Type 1 diabetes, especially, have discovered newfound confidence and management success with the system, which promises both to facilitate tighter control and protect against hypoglycemia. Continuous glucose monitoring also has potential to help people with Type 2 diabetes, pre-diabetes, and anyone else concerned with their blood sugar.
Patient access and cost, however, have been fraught issues from the beginning. The system is not inexpensive, few patients can pay the full out-of-pocket price, and Dexcom has often had an uphill climb in convincing insurers to cover it. When we spoke to Dexcom CEO Kevin Sayers last year, he revealed that insurance companies are still somewhat trigger shy based on past experience, given that more primitive CGM models in the past often delivered mediocre results and poor patient compliance. Mr. Sayers emphasized that improving patient access is one of the company’s “core missions.”
Perhaps as a result of patient access hurdles, as many as 75% of people with diabetes are unaware of CGM technology, according to Dexcom’s research. The company, which hopes to establish its line of CGMs as the standard of care for diabetes, clearly intends for the free sampling program to help drive awareness and enthusiasm for its products.
“We can’t expect people with diabetes to better manage their disease if they aren’t aware of the most modern and effective diabetes management technologies available to them,” stated Rick Doubleday, executive vice president and chief commercial officer at Dexcom. “This program will help increase awareness of CGM, introducing people with diabetes to a whole new world of better knowledge, informed decision-making and improved outcomes.”
Dexcom kindly provided me with a sample of Hello Dexcom. It is identical to the regular Dexcom, as far as I can tell. You receive a single sensor and a single transmitter, and the setup is otherwise much the same as the full experience. You do require a smart device to use it.
During the single 10-day sample, Dexcom hopes to send users on a “digital journey” in order to explore the potential of the system and the way it can facilitate better diabetes management. The press release gives more details:
The digital journey includes daily check-ins with more information on key Dexcom G6 features they can explore, including setting custom alerts and allowing others to follow their readings through remote monitoring capabilities. Hello Dexcom also provides information on how to interpret the actionable personal health insights and data users receive while wearing the G6, educating patients on how to monitor their daily habits and better control glucose levels. Additionally, the program shares a detailed FAQ and access to customer support to assist throughout the process.
“Hello Dexcom” is now available in the United States and Canada, and the program will roll out in additional markets in the coming months.
Physicians interested in procuring the samples for their patients are encouraged to visit Dexcomprovider.com/Hello. If you’re a patient, by all means, you have our permission to pester your own doctor to do the same.