Guides

How To Get A Sensor


Choose a Sensor

Compare the sensors that are available currently. They each have pros and cons and have different qualities that which may be good for some people and bad for others.

Sensor Options

Dexcom G6

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Dexcom has 3 parts - transmitter, sensor and receiver. You can view the data on your phone or a separate receiver. It also works with the Tandem insulin pump.

Medtronic Guardian

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Medtronic system has 3 parts - sensor, transmitter and pump. This sensor only works with the insulin pump.

Abbott Freestyle Libre

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This sensor is the smallest one available right now. It is also the cheapest. The downsides are that it isn’t continuous, so there are no alerts if you are low or high.

Eversense

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This sensor lasts the longest - 90 days. It has to be placed under the skin by your doctor. It has two parts, the implantable sensor and a transmitter that talks to your phone.

Alerts & Alarms

Dexcom G6 
  • Customizable

  • Sharable

  • Possible to turn off all alerts except the urgent low at 50 mg/dL

Medtronic Guardian 
  • Customizable.

Libre 
  • None

Eversense
  • Customizable

  • Vibrates on body

Data View

Dexcom G6
  • Android Phone

  • Apple Phone & Watch

  • Pebble Smart Watch

  • Dexcom Receiver

  • Tandem Pump

Medtronic Guardian
  • Apple Phone

Libre
  • Android Phone

  • Freestyle Libre Receiver

Eversense
  • Android Phone

  • Apple Phone & Watch

  • Pebble Smart Watch

Finger Sticks

Dexcom G6 
  • None

Medtronic Guardian 
  • 2 per day

Libre 
  • None!

Eversense 
  • 2 per day

Length of Use

Dexcom G6
  • 10 day sensor

  • 90 day transmitter
    (No charging)

Medtronic Guardian
  • 7 day sensor

  • 7 day transmitter battery needs charging weekly & replacement each year.

Libre
  • 10-14 day sensor (transmitter included)

Eversense
  • 90 day sensor

  • Transmitter charged every 24-36 hours.

Body Attachment

Dexcom G6 
  • Attaches in one step. Simple insertion

  • Integrated adhesive

Medtronic Guardian 
  • Attaches in many steps

  • Requires outer adhesive

Libre 
  • Attaches in one step

  • Small integrated adhesive

Eversense 
  • Inserted by a physician during a medical visit. Minor procedure.

  • Transmitter sits outside the body and is held on by an adhesive.


Understand Your Costs

Choosing a CGM may depend on cost - check out the estimated costs below.

The costs vary depending on your level of coverage and how your insurance classifies CGMs. Select an option below that matches your situation.

Monthly Range

Total Startup Range


Talk with your doctor and get a prescription

You may need to help your doctor comprehend why this technology will be good for you and why you want it.

The main thing you need from your doctor is a prescription. You can share the links below with your doctor to help them understand the clinical benefits. To avoid delays, ask your doctor to make sure they write out important details in the prescription, such as the fact that you will use the device everyday.

Tips for talking with your doctor

  • Remember, you are in charge of your body.

  • Advocate for yourself with a list of reasons why you believe it is best for your lifestyle.

  • Bring a family member or trusted friend to support you.


Get Insurance Approval

Once you have the prescription, the process of getting insurance approval can feel like you’re jumping through many hoops (sometimes you are), but it will be worth it.

There are two ways to get coverage. Some insurance companies have “Pharmacy Benefit” and some cover sensors through “Durable Medical Equipment (DME)”.

Contact the company you want a CGM from

CGM companies want your business and often have a helpful person on staff who understands the “ins and outs” of getting coverage. They will often walk you through the steps to confirm coverage. You will need your insurance card with your insurance policy number.

Pre-Authorization

Pre-authorization is the process that some insurance companies make you go through to get coverage for a sensor. The insurance or CGM company will let you know what is required if you need pre-authorization. Sometimes a letter of Medical Necessity may be required from your doctor, in addition to the prescription.

Preparation

Some insurance companies require your last month or more of blood sugar logs and/or A1c test results.

Wait time

Once you’ve submitted all your paperwork you may be able to move the process along by checking up every 1-2 weeks on the status. After a couple of weeks, it is absolutely justified to make a check-in call.


Get Your Sensor

Where you get your supplies depends on how you get your supplies covered by insurance.

If your insurance covers sensors through “Durable Medical Equipment”, the best way to get your supplies it to call the sensor company. If you’re getting your supplies through “pharmacy benefit”, you will need your prescription sent to the pharmacy. Call them to make sure they have ordered the sensors and then go pick it up!

You can say, “hi, im interested in getting a sensor, can you help me with that?”

Dexcom G6

1-800-838-3566

Abbott Freestyle Libre

1-800-633-8766

Medtronic Guardian

1-510-749-5400

Eversense

1-844-736-7348

Pharmacies

Your local pharmacy has the ability to call to order sensors for you. Costco, Walmart, CVS and Krogers also do.


Get Support and Training

When you get your CGM, you can ask your clinic or the device company if they offer training sessions to people starting new diabetes devices.

Youtube has a lot of great videos of people who are inserting a sensor for the first time. You can also check our our wisdom pages to see some tips and tricks people have come up with through experienced use.