The Diabetes Technology Network (DTN-UK) has announced that, following a request to Abbott Diabetes Care from the DTN, Abbott’s Diabetes Care division have donated 6,500 FreeStyle Libre sensors to be used by NHS Trusts during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The announcement was made by Dr Pratik Choudhary, Chair DTN – UK, and Dr Dinesh Nagi, Chair Association of British Clinical Diabetologists (ABCD).
There are two main purposes of this donation. First, to facilitate safe and rapid discharge of insulin- treated patients from hospital, allowing remote monitoring of glucose values post discharge in a scenario where there has been need for rapid changes in insulin doses, such as new diagnosis of Type 1 diabetes. Second, to protect patients as well as health care professionals by providing a means of contactless glucose monitoring during hospital stays where frequent glucose monitoring is required.
The use of two sensors (each lasts 14 days) per patient will allow these patients to be followed up remotely, keeping them safe and allowing the team to adjust insulin doses if required. At the end of the four-week period (two sensors) those patients who may meet current local guidelines for Libre may continue to use sensors. Other patients will need to be transferred to alternate modes of glucose monitoring according to local guidelines.
The patient must have a compatible IOS or Android mobile phone to work with FreeStyle LibreLink, allowing for immediate HCP remote monitoring. The Trust will need to be set up with a LibreView account if one is not in place already.
Facilitating frequent monitoring
Dr Choudhary said of the donation, “Recent data show that people with diabetes have an elevated risk of adverse outcomes with Covid-19, which is also linked to their glucose control. We are really pleased that Abbott has agreed to our request to help us support patients with diabetes who are admitted to hospital by donating FreeStyle Libre sensors. The use of the FreeStyle Libre system will facilitate frequent monitoring of glucose for those who need it to control their blood glucose. It also allows us to view patient data remotely, supporting timely discharge with safe and effective remote follow-up.”
Neil Harris, general manager of Abbott’s diabetes care business in the UK and Ireland adds, “Providing frontline healthcare professionals and patients with technology and equipment is critical in the fight against Covid-19. We’re delighted to make FreeStyle Libre sensors available for hospitalised people living with diabetes, which will help frontline healthcare workers to monitor and manage the glucose levels of these patients better and, at the same time, help limit Covid-19 exposure, helping to keep people safe.”