UnitedHealth launches digital Type 2 diabetes therapy Level2 

Diabetes blood sugar testing
UnitedHealth has launched a new digital therapy for Type 2 diabetes. (Pixabay/stevepb)(Pixabay / stevepb)

UnitedHealth Group has launched its own digital platform to manage care for members with Type 2 diabetes. 

Called Level2, the program provides eligible members with several connected devices including a mobile continuous glucose monitor and activity tracker to provide customized real-time feedback for managing their condition. 

Updates are sent to members through app-based alerts. 

In addition, Level2 participants are offered one-on-one coaching to help them achieve a healthier lifestyle through better food choices, exercise and improved sleep.  

Amy Meister, CEO of Level2, told Fierce Healthcare that the program aims to get at the underlying causes of Type 2 diabetes to significantly improve the lives of users—including helping some achieve remission. 

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Type 2 diabetes patients can’t be treated the same as patients with type 1 diabetes, she said, and doing so can prevent them from seeing substantial and sustained improvement in their conditions. 

“We really wanted a new approach that really focuses on the root cause, which is attacking metabolic dysregulation,” Meister said. 

Level2 is now available to more than 230,000 UnitedHealthcare members in fully-insured employer plans across 27 states and the District of Columbia, with the goal of adding more eligible members over time. Meister said that UHC’s membership includes more than 4 million people with diabetes. 

The insurer piloted the program with 790 members and was able to eliminate more than 450 prescriptions for those participants. In addition, many users saw clinically significant reductions in their A1C levels within 90 days on the platform.  

Reductions were greatest among patients who started to the program with the most-elevated A1C levels, UnitedHealth said. 

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Meister said that anecdotal feedback from participants who have regained substantial control over their conditions shows they have more energy, feel better and are glad to do away with traditional blood sugar tests multiple times a day. 

She added that having the continuous flow of data through Level2 could also avoid a potentially severe case of COVID-19. Patients with Type 2 diabetes are at high risk for complications related to the virus, but those who have their blood sugar under control are more likely to contract a milder case. 

The glucose monitors send upwards of 288 readings per day, allowing the team to more quickly identify potential risks. 

“We’re like a home security system for your body," Meister said.