Improving payer access

In the first quarter, Insulet (PODD) secured coverage for its Omnipod devices for 5 million Medicare and Medicaid members. According to the first-quarter earnings conference call, the company’s current coverage extends to more than one-third of Medicare beneficiaries and more than half of Medicaid beneficiaries. The company has also expanded coverage for its recently released Omnipod DASH system from 100 million covered patients at the end of fiscal 2018 to 130 million covered patients at the end of the first quarter.

Insulet has opted for the pharmacy channel to ensure the widespread distribution of Omnipod Dash. According to the first-quarter earnings conference call, the distribution of Omnipod DASH through Cardinal Health and the pay-as-you-go model are expected to be key growth drivers for this system in fiscal 2019. Currently, Omnipod DASH is the only insulin pump that does not lock patients into a four-year contract. Thus, the company has removed the constraint of high upfront costs for new users, thereby allowing them to access the technology prior to the expiry of their previous lock-in period. The distribution through the pharmacy channel and the pay-as-you-go model are also expected to prove beneficial to payers since it reduces their risk as well as the cost of member attrition.

Automated insulin delivery system

On June 9, Insulet issued a press release announcing positive results from a clinical trial evaluating the automated insulin delivery system, Omnipod Horizon, for improving glycemic control in pediatric type 1 diabetes patients in the age group of two years to six years.

According to the first-quarter earnings conference call, the company expects to begin pivotal trials for Omnipod Horizon in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2019. The company plans to launch this system in the second half of fiscal 2020.

According to the first-quarter earnings conference call, Insulet has also collaborated with Tidepool to create an open source iOS-based automated insulin delivery system, Tidepool Loop.

Direct operations in Europe

According to the first-quarter earnings conference call, to boost its international market presence, Insulet transitioned from a distributor-based to direct model in Europe in the second half of fiscal 2018. This strategy has already resulted in significant improvement in the company’s Net Promoter Score in Europe.

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