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From Abby: Little Bits.

Diabetes advocacy and education moments aren't limited to coming from certified diabetes educators, or going to a group of people who signed up for a seminar.  Sometimes it comes in little bits.

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You can teach about diabetes everywhere. Today I got a phone call from my insurance company to tell me that my pump supply coverage was approved. While I already knew they would be calling to confirm, since I had called the day I was officially covered to find out how much of my paycheck would go toward the tiny plastic pieces that keep me alive, it was still nice to hear that the process was complete (for now).

But I was a little surprised with the insurance company rep asked if he could ask me a question.

Of course I responded with, "Yeah, sure! Absolutely" because I love answering questions. (Hello, I'm a triage nurse.)

"I see that you use a Medtronic pump. But I also see that you're using a continuous glucose monitor made by Dexcom ... is that correct?"

"Yep, sure is."

"Oh, well I thought Medtronic made that too? I thought you can't use a Dexcom system with a Medtronic pump?"

"Well, they aren't integrated - you're right, but I tried Medtronic's similar product and it really didn't work for me - so I carry both with me. Which can be a pain, but it really works for me and I've had the Dexcom for almost a year now."

"Interesting. I'll have to tell the medical director that these products can be used at the same time and that since you were already approved for the Dexcom before that we should approve you again - whenever the request comes through."

"Well that would be really super if you could do that, thank you."

Sometimes little bits of calm, reasonable education can get you far. Or at least make the insurance process a little easier to navigate.

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Educating, one phone call at a time.  Have you ever had an unintentional moment of advocacy?


Great conversation! Every little bit helps!

I ran into a parent of a child with diabetes when I was paying my cable bill. She took my payment AND my blog address & some info on the D-OC. :)

Wow, really does show you how much they honestly know about the devise they pay for.

Thanks for you help.

Great job, Abby! One little phone call and piece of info at a time.

I wear my Dexcom sensor on my arm, and once last summer when it was in full view, this guy in line behind me at the grocery store just flat out asked for the whole story. It was a little bit bizarre (I live in Philly--not a city known for chattiness or even friendliness in public places), but he was polite about it and obviously very interested, so I was happy to explain what it was.

And I'm glad he opened with something like "Can I ask what that is?" rather than the assumption that it's an absolutely huge nicotine patch, which has also happened to me :/

I'm with Abby - I have a new Medtronic pump (had to change over from the Deltec Cosmo) but have been using the Dexcom for almost 3 years. I tried the Medtronic CGM, and didn't like it. So, I'm keeping the Dexcom. It has it's quirks, but they are the quirks I know and understand by now :)

While working on a group project the other week, I took out my insulin pen so I could have my granola bar snack. All five of the other group members stared at it in awe. They asked what it was, how I got D, what I can/can't eat, and so on. We took about 10 minutes away from our work time just to talk about my D. It felt great to educate my peers about D. The fact that they were the ones wanting to know made it all the more worth it!

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