Oh, insurance… What are you doing?

10 11 2009

I got a letter yesterday from my health insurance stating that they are no longer covering my Dexcom sensors, starting from August. I was confused because they’ve covered them in the past. Based on the code they listed, I assumed I had hit my DME cap for the year (this was my first full year on the sensors) and would need to appeal.

However, after spending 1 hour talking to 5 reps, I found out that the health insurance has randomly decided they are “disposable” since I throw them out after 7 days and they don’t cover “disposables”.  I imagine that “disposables” is intended to cover things like alcohol wipes and cotton balls, which they should rightly not cover.  However, 7 days is hardly “disposable”.

Edgepark (the company that provides the sensors) is already working it and their argument is that they’re not considered “disposable” since they are used in conjunction with a Durable Medical Equipment (the receiver).

I won’t know anything for at least 5 business days, but it is good to know that Edgepark is trying to regain my coverage.  I really cannot afford to either a) pay full price for the sensors or b) limit my use of them to every other week or similar.  I just hope this gets straightened out.

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Data and what to make of it

2 11 2009

I just downloaded data from my Dexcom and have been taking a look at it.  There’s so much data and so many different ways of looking at it; it’s hard to tell what to make of it.  There are a few items I like to focus on:

Modal Day screen

  • average blood sugar for the month
  • average blood sugar for the past 3 months
  • standard deviation

Glucose Distribution screen

  • % in range for the month
  • % in range for the past 3 months

Success Report screen

  • compare data montly
  • compare data quarterly

The average will tell me about what my A1c will be.  I use this chart and I have found that comparing my Dexcom average to this chart is very close to my actual A1c.

The standard deviation will tell me if I am doing too much of a rollercoaster.  Lower is better.  I will confess, mine is not as low as I would like, so I know that I need to level it out.

% in range is very important to me.  Knowing that I am in range 75% of the time is greatly empowering.  Knowing that I am 95% in range upon waking is even more empowering.  Of course, knowing I am only 50ish% in range after lunch tells me that I need to work on that area.

Comparing the data from month to month is great for trends.  I can see that my average in October was less that what it was in September, which is great.  I can also see that my average for the last quarter is lower than the previous quarter, so I imagine that my A1c will be lower as well.

Using the Dexcom software can be a little overwhelming (there’s so much more data available than I even mentioned), but if I focus on these few things, I feel like I have a pretty good handle on my diabetes control.