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Image: Government of New Brunswick

N.B. government expands insulin pump program

By Tara Clow Jul 31, 2023 | 1:07 PM

There’s good news for those living with Type 1 diabetes.

Insulin pump devices and other supplies will soon be more affordable and easier to get.

On Monday, the province announced that the age cap is being removed for those over age 25 as of Aug. 15.

“This is part of an additional $2.1 million being spent towards better diabetes management in New Brunswick, which will lead to fewer complications, reduce hospitalizations, and lead to all-around better health,” says Health Minister Bruce Fitch.

“As a result of these updates to the program’s framework, we are expecting the number of clients accessing pumps and supplies to nearly double.”

The Department of Health is also updating the client and family contribution calculations to better account for the rising costs of living, and it will increase the number of income levels from five to seven.

“Adjusting the income levels and co-payments will make the program more affordable, particularly for low- and middle-income earners,” said a news release from the province.

In addition, the province will soon offer coverage for continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) to people living with diabetes who require intensive insulin therapy delivered by a pump, or through multiple daily injections. It is expected that more than 5,000 New Brunswickers will qualify under the program.

The province said it will move to a “payer-of-last-resort model” as of Oct. 1 to “ensure the long-term sustainability of these programs.”

That means an individual’s insurance coverage, if they have any, will be factored in and only the uninsured portion will be eligible for coverage.

“This model is in line with how other Atlantic provinces co-ordinate their insulin pump programs, as well as how the New Brunswick Provincial Drug Plan operates,” said the release.

The process will not be changing for anyone who is currently in the program and does not have employee benefits.


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