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[IP] Medicare CGM Access Act of 2015



 This is partly in response to Dick Price's excellent posts. My biggest problem
with diabetes management is day to day inconsistency. I have experienced both
hyperglycemia (dawn phenomenon) and hypoglycemia due to who knows what. My
biggest fear is severe nocturnal hypoglycemia. Like my friend Dick, I am big
supporter of CGM usage by young, middle aged, and older Type 1s subject to
nocturnal hypoglycemic unawareness. The modern CGM systems are much improved
compared with the technology of five or ten years ago.

 This brings me to Medicare coverage of CGM. Two identical bills have been
introduced in the 114th Congress, the Medicare CGM Access Act of 2015. H.R. 1427
was introduced by Representatives Reed(R-NY), DeGette(D-CO), and Whitfield
(R-KY) and has more than 30 co-sponsors. S.804 is co-sponsored by Senators
Collins(R-ME) and Shaheen(D-NH). These bills have been referred to committee and
are awaiting hearings. I have personally met with Rep. Tom Reed and volunteered
to testify before Congress. Advocates include JDRF and AACE. This bill is
necessary because Medicare regulations do not allow coverage of any CGM devices,
as they are considered precautionary. It has been more than ten years since CGM
technology was first approved by the FDA and these devices are now much more
than precautionary. They are cost effective because they prevent complications
such as seizures, coma, cognitive impairment, and untimely death.

 If you agree with me that passing these bills will save taxpayer money and
lives then it is time for advocacy. These bills are not political. The
Congressional Diabetes Caucus has more than 300 bi-partisan members. Call,
email, or visit your local Congressional office and explain why these bill are
necessary. The 114th Congress will adjourn in about 18 months. A lot needs to
happen for the Medicare CGM Access Act to become law!

Jerry Smith
.
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