In June of 2020, the FDA approved the Freestyle® Libre2 for use in the United States. December of this same year saw Health Canada also approve the sale of this product in Canada.
What is the Libre2?
The Libre2 is the latest flash monitoring system from Abbott Pharmaceuticals. A flash monitor uses a sensor placed underneath the skin that measures the glucose in interstitial fluid and a reader to continuous record glucose readings.
How is it different from the Freestyle® Libre?
The biggest change to the new Libre system is that it now can alert you to high or low blood sugar levels. The new Bluetooth® feature allows for the user to set options high and low alerts on their phone or reader.
The reader will make a sound and vibrate to tell the user that they are high or low. They will not see an actual glucose reading however until they scan the sensor.
Another difference between the Libre and Libre2 is the colour. The Libre2 is now sporting a fresh shade of blue.
What is the price?
The price for the Libre2 will remain the same as the Libre.
What about coverage for the Libre2?
According to a recent Abbott press release, they have secured partial or full reimbursement for the FreeStyle® Libre system in 37 countries, including France, Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the U.S.
The FreeStyle® Libre2 is covered by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), and available to Medicare beneficiaries with diabetes who meet eligibility criteria.
Ontario and Quebec will also continue to cover the Libre2 in Canada when it is available.
Learn more about diabetes supplies coverage in Canada.
Who can use the Libre2?
In both the US and Canada, the Libre2 is approved for use in adults and children over 4 years old.
What are the features of the Libre2
The Libre2 has
- 14 day sensors
- Small sized sensor for discreet placement
- Factory calibration
- One hour warm up time
- The ability to measure glucose every minute
- A new designation as an integrated Continuous Glucose Monitoring System (iCGM)
- Same price point as the Libre
What are the drawbacks of the Libre2?
- While the Libre2 is designed to work with a mobile app, an app has not yet been released.
- Alerts don’t tell you exactly how high or low you are. You must scan the sensor to find out.
- While the lag time is better than it was in the Libre (the difference between what a blood glucose reading value is and that of the interstitial tissue), it is still not as good as the Dexcom.
Download the comparison chart to see which glucose monitoring system is right for you.
Compare CGM Features
Download the free PDF to compare Continuous Glucose Monitors
Rick Phillips says
Well closer to a full blown CGM, it is still no bug cigars. That’s OK it will get there
Elena Burazer St-Denis says
The Freestyle Libre has been a life saver for me. But unfortunately I do not have diabetes I do have very severe hypoglycemia and therefore must pay out of pocket since I do not meet the 2 criterias set by the RAMQ (in Quebec Canada). I am sure I am not alone. Being retired and on my pension it is difficult. I truly hope this issue will be rectified soon.
Barb Wagstaff says
Elena, it would be nice if anyone who needs one of these devices for medical reasons was able to access them without a huge cost to themselves.