Novo Nordisk Inc. is exploring why so few eligible patients make use of the free Medicare diabetes screening benefit.

Novo Nordisk, diabetes screening, free Medicare diabetes screening benefit, Medicare diabetes screening, diabetes screening benefit, diabetes, prediabetes, Novo Nordisk BlueSheet, Jerzy Gruhn, Diabetes Advocacy Alliance, diabetes prevention

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Novo Nordisk examines low use of diabetes screening benefit

October 19th, 2010

PRINCETON, N.J. – Novo Nordisk Inc. is exploring why so few eligible patients make use of the free Medicare diabetes screening benefit.

The diabetes care provider reported Tuesday that fewer than 12% of those eligible to use the free Medicare diabetes screening benefit are doing so, according to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services claims data. The benefit is available to adults age 65 and older who have at least one risk factor for diabetes.

Efforts aimed at increasing awareness of the free Medicare diabetes screening benefit and importance of screening are examined in the Novo Nordisk BlueSheet, an online newsletter about diabetes and other chronic diseases.

Novo Nordisk noted that research shows that those over the age of 60 with prediabetes can prevent or delay the onset of diabetes by as much as 71% through relatively modest lifestyle changes, which underscores the need for education and awareness programs.

"Living with a chronic disease like diabetes is a challenge, which is why education and intervention are such important factors in successful long-term outcomes for patients," commented Jerzy Gruhn, president of Novo Nordisk. "At Novo Nordisk, we understand that coping with diabetes requires knowledge, skill and support. That is why we remain committed to the education of patients and health care professionals. We believe it is one of the most powerful tools we have in the fight against diabetes today."

The company said the third issue of the Novo Nordisk BlueSheet examines various ways awareness and education play an integral role in the prevention, detection and treatment of diabetes. It also provides an update on the Diabetes Advocacy Alliance, a coalition that is committed to helping improve diabetes prevention, detection and care by aligning key diabetes stakeholders around diabetes-related policy and legislative efforts.