Medtronic (NYSE:MDT) announced today that it entered multiple partnerships to improve health equity for people of color living with diabetes.
Fridley, Minn.-based Medtronic committed investments in partnerships with the American Diabetes Association (ADA) and the T1D Exchange, along with additional research efforts, to better understand and address such disparities, according to a news release.
The company is providing a $1 million sponsorship over the next three years to ADA’s Technology Access Project (TAP), which sets out to provide access and availability of diabetes technology regardless of gender, race, income or location.
“Health equity in diabetes is central to our mission, and unfortunately, for many the latest technological advancements to support living with the disease are not accessible due to insurance barriers and high out-of-pocket costs,” ADA chief development officer Charles D. Henderson said in the release. “We thank Medtronic for supporting our tireless work to break down obstacles to treatment, and hope that one day everyone with this disease has the opportunity to benefit from the important advancements that have been made in diabetes management.”
Medtronic’s partnership with T1D Exchange supports an upcoming quality improvement pilot set to review data collected from in-person and telemedicine visits to determine baseline diabetes technology use rates among people of color who tend to have lower adoption and test interventions to determine their effects in technology adoption.
“As we continue to build the largest diabetes data platform in the United States, partnerships with like-minded companies, such as Medtronic, allow us to use our data to better understand and improve quality of life for people living with this disease,” T1D Exchange CEO Dave Walton said. “Patient education and access continue to drive the work we do, especially when it comes to ensuring people of color are receiving access to vital technology, resources and support.”
Finally, Medtronic is supporting an NIH-funded study by providing its advanced hybrid closed-loop insulin pump technology and training for the project. The study aims to improve glycemic control in high-risk African American youth with Type 1 diabetes using the company’s insulin pump technology paired with frequent home telehealth visits conducted with a dedicated diabetes educator. Results are expected in 2022.
“Underlying barriers to health equity – including awareness, access, trust, bias and affordability – are unfortunate truths that exist in the U.S. healthcare system. Our work in this area seeks to not only bring awareness to these issues but also to partner to get to the root of these problems, and course-correcting,” Medtronic EVP & president of its diabetes business Sean Salmon said. “As a medical device manufacturer, we have the responsibility to help reduce health inequities within communities of color by ensuring they are granted the same access to technologies that may help them better manage their disease.”