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    The New Type 2 Diabetes Technologies Pharmacists Need to Know About

    Pharmacists need to stay informed about new technologies in order to help diabetic patients take advantage.


    New diabetes technology will give patients access to more data about their health status and will add convenience and customization to management strategies. But pharmacists will need to stay informed about these new advances in order to help patients prepare for the changes ahead.

    "I think that's a big piece of what pharmacists do is educate the patient not only on their disease but on the options that are out there," says Jonathan Marquess, PharmD, CDE, FAPhA, president of the Institute for Wellness and Education, Inc. and owner of 10 independent pharmacies in the Georgia area.

    Industry experts say that as diabetes technology continues to advance, the tools patients rely on each day to help them manage their disease—whether they are glucose monitors, insulin pens, or pumps—are also expected to evolve.

    David T. Ahn, MD, endocrinologist and assistant clinical professor of medicine at UCLA, says that in the future, tools previously used to treat type 1 diabetes will  become more accessible for those with the type 2.

    Related article: Adult Patients Could Be Misdiagnosed with Wrong Form of Diabetes

    In 2017, Abbott announced the approval of the FreeStyle Libre Flash Glucose Monitoring System. The device is distinctive  because it uses a sensor placed on the upper arm.

    According to Ahn, the Freestyle Libre is a more affordable continuous monitoring system, making it a more appealing treatment option for more patients. "It really hits a convenience and price sweet spot for patients and insurers," he says. For many type 2 diabetes patients, the device may be the first time they are able to trace their blood glucose levels throughout the day.

    In the next few years, more patch pumps are expected to hit the market, Ahn says. The V-Go wearable insulin delivery device is here already and delivers a steady rate of basal insulin, while allowing the patient to administer a meal-time dose of insulin.

    Another theme in new technology is the ability to electronically track patient data. More wireless glucose meters are also smartphone compatible, allowing patients and health professional to keep diaries and logs for insulin, activity, diet, and blood glucose levels, Ahn says.

    Smart insulin pens that automatically capture the date, time, and dose of insulin delivered will also help patients keep better records.

    Up next: Adherence in the pharmacy

    Jill Sederstrom
    Jill Sederstrom is a Contributing Editor

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    • [email protected]
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