Roche diabetes monitoring products such as glucose meters and testing strips are to be sold in supermarkets as a way of bypassing access problems that some people with diabetes have with retail pharmacies.
Roche Diabetes Care Australia has announced that products including Accu-Chek Instant S blood glucose meters, Accu-Chek Instant test strips and Accu-Chek Softclix lancing products, will be nationally available in the healthcare aisle at Woolworths from March 2020.
Jane Crowe, General Manager, Roche Diabetes Care Australia noted that while the local pharmacy remains the key access point for products that are reimbursed via the National Diabetes Services Scheme (NDSS) and to seek advice, for the many Australians who are not managing their diabetes effectively, Roche did not want access to be a barrier.
“We are committed to innovation, not only in our product development, but also in ways in which consumers can access them,” she said.
“Given this range is not reimbursed via the NDSS, no form is required to purchase the products, enabling us to establish the partnership with Woolworths and broaden availability.
“We are passionate about understanding the needs of people with diabetes and offering them broad access to encourage regular self-management,” said Ms Crowe.
In 2018 the government restricted the availability of subsidised glucose testing strips via the NDSS and pharmacies for people with type 2 diabetes not using insulin. The move followed a review that found “limited evidence that self-monitoring of blood glucose improves blood glucose control” in this patient group.