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Diabetes Tech – Try Before You Buy!

By Elaine Young, Sara Fragione, and Eliza Skoler

Want to try an insulin pump, in place of daily insulin injections? Insulet is offering its Omnipod DASH for 30 days to new customers at no cost. The Pod can be prescribed virtually and picked up at your pharmacy

For many people with diabetes, insulin pumps can be used to reduce the daily challenges of injecting insulin. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual trainings help people learn to use their new pumps. In the past, people had to go through the durable medical equipment process to get an insulin pump, which requires approval and a statement of medical necessity from your healthcare team. Now, you can get some pumps, like Omnipod, more quickly and conveniently through your pharmacy, with just a prescription. Because the pharmacy route is easier – especially during COVID-19 – Insulet is offering a free 30-day trial of its Omnipod DASH insulin management system.

What is Omnipod DASH?

Omnipod DASH has two parts: an insulin “Pod” and a Personal Diabetes Manager (or PDM). The Pod and the PDM work together to deliver the insulin that you need.

  • The Pod is a small, tubeless insulin “patch” pump worn on your body. The Pod contains enough insulin for three days of non-stop and on-demand basal (long-acting) and bolus (mealtime) insulin. When the three days are up, you take the Pod off and throw it away.

  • The PDM is a wireless Bluetooth-connected device that you can use to tell your Pod how much insulin to deliver. The PDM can also send insulin data to a nearby smartphone for additional monitoring, and it can be uploaded to get a history of your diabetes management.

Learn more about the Omnipod DASH system here.

Can you use your CGM with the Omnipod DASH?

Continuous glucose monitoring devices – or CGMs, which provide real-time, 24/7 glucose readings – do not currently integrate with the Omnipod DASH system (for automated insulin delivery). However, you can use the two devices to reduce both your insulin injections and multiple daily fingersticks – since the Pod is delivering your insulin and the CGM is measuring your glucose. The CGM data will help determine how much bolus insulin to deliver using a dose calculator included on the PDM. For more on future automated insulin delivery with the Omnipod, read about the upcoming Omnipod 5.

What else do I need to know about Omnipod DASH?

With the free 30-day trial, there is no commitment to continue using the pump or the insulin management system. However, if you like Omnipod DASH, you can continue to get it from your pharmacy. Because Omnipod is a disposable patch pump, there is no initial cost for a tubed insulin pump (which can often be expensive); instead, you’ll pay for the patch pumps every month, with an additional fee for the PDM. The cost of the Omnipod DASH system will depend on your health insurance plan and can be as low as $40 per month.

Who’s not eligible for the Omnipod DASH free trial?

You are not eligible for the free 30-day trial if you have Medicare, Medicaid, or other federal health insurance, if you are a member of Kaiser Permanente or United Health Care, or if you are already an Omnipod customer. Click here to get to the Omnipod website to request your free 30-day trial.