There have been two major announcements in the past month about
changes to the National Diabetes Services Scheme (NDSS) which may
- The Morrison Government has increased funding by $100
million over four years to expand free access to glucose-monitoring
technology through the NDSS to help more adults and children with
type 1 diabetes. The changes will start from 1 March 2019.
- From 1 December 2018, a limited number of people using certain
brands of blood glucose test strips and types of insulin syringes
will be affected due to the products' removal from the
For expanded access to glucose monitoring technology, here is a
summary of the announcement:
- Access to glucose monitoring technology including continuous
glucose monitoring (CGM) and FreeStyle Libre flash glucose
monitoring system will be expanded to some adults over 21 years of
- People eligible to access the technology now include:
- People with type 1 diabetes aged 21 years or over who have
concessional status and a high clinical need.
- Women with type 1 diabetes actively planning pregnancy, are
pregnant or are breastfeeding.
- Children and young people with conditions similar to type 1
diabetes who require insulin, such as cystic-fibrosis-related
diabetes or neonatal diabetes.
- This initiative will save eligible people up to $7,000 per
- The Government is working with Diabetes Australia and key
diabetes experts to finalise the clinical eligibility criteria and
implement the expanded scheme.
For changes to blood glucose test strips and insulin
syringes, here is a summary of the changes:
- People registered on the NDSS will still be able to access
appropriate subsidised blood glucose test strips and insulin
syringes. Most people with diabetes registered with the
NDSS will not be affected by the product changes.
- A full list of both delisted and available products can be
- If you need a new brand of blood glucose test strips, you will
be eligible to receive a free blood glucose meter.
- People using delisted products have until 28 February 2019 to
transition to a new product. However, supply of discontinued
products will be subject to availability after 1 Dec 2018.
- There are no changes to urine ketone test strips and other
products subsidised under the NDSS, including insulin pump
consumables and continuous glucose monitoring products.
In addition to product changes, the cost of blood glucose and
urine test strips as well as insulin pump infusion sets and
reservoirs will become more affordable for some NDSS registrants.
Read more about the reduced NDSS co-payments.
here to find out more.
Some of the most common questions we're receiving at Diabetes
Q. Why are these changes happening?
A. To ensure the ongoing sustainability of the
NDSS, the Department of Health has undertaken a review of products
subsidised under the NDSS. This included blood glucose test strips,
insulin syringes and urine ketone test strips.
The Department considered a number of submissions from product
Based on the analysis undertaken by the Department and relevant
experts, a new range of products has been determined and will come
into effect for the NDSS Product Schedule from 1 December 2018.
These changes include the removal of some product brands and the
addition of new product brands.
Q. What happens if the strips for my
meter are no longer subsidized and I need to get a new meter?
A. Speak to your health professional
about what is the best meter for you.
Click here to find out how to order your new meter.
Q. What meter should I swap to?
A. Different products will suit different
individuals. Google the different brands to see a list of features
brand names are listed on the NDSS site, pages 3 and 4).
Discuss your choice with your health professional at your next
visit or ring the NDSS helpline on 1300 136 588.