Capitol Hill Briefing Explores New Innovations in Diabetes Care, Therapies

Dr Robert A Vigersky-Medtronic
Dr. Robert A. Vigersky, Medtronic Diabetes Medical Director, discusses how the medical technology sector is bringing innovation to diabetes care.

Experts from multiple health industry sectors spoke on new innovations in diabetes care and therapies at a Capitol Hill briefing on Monday, May 18.  HLC President Mary R. Grealy drew attention to projections by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention that one in every three Americans will have diabetes by the year 2050, but noted that actions are being taken to curb this escalation rate.

Dr. Kathryn Strother of the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System in Baton Rouge, LA talked about the importance of standardizing quality benchmarks and coordinating education and care management activities.  Consistency in care across hospitals and facilities in educating the patient and encouraging physician engagement are key factors in proper disease management, she said.

Dr. Robert Vigersky of Medtronic discussed the organization’s efforts to innovate around comfort, ease, and cost for diabetes patients.  He stated that solutions such as an artificial pancreas, which would utilize an insulin pump and continuous glucose monitoring technology, are less than five years away.

Sanofi’s Andrew Purcell talked about the lack of medication adherence among patients, and the need for tailored patient support programs in order to increase efficacy.  He spoke of the need for public policies that support patient education and choice, as well as reimbursement for innovative services and products.

Thomas Menighan of American Pharmacists Association reiterated the importance of patients’ involvement in their treatment.  He described how patients can be empowered through education and earning self-management credentials, which lead to long term savings and efficacy.

Briefing materials are available here.


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