Diabetes is one of the largest health epidemics in the United States. More than 30 million people affected or nearly one out of every ten people, and over $250 billion in annual healthcare costs associated with the disease. On a global basis, that number is even larger.
It's estimated that there are nearly half a billion people with diabetes, resulting in nearly $1 trillion per year in costs. For diabetics, monitoring blood glucose levels to maintain a high level of glycemic control is a necessary part of life.
And for decades, this process required fingerstick readings where you prick your finger in order to draw several drops of blood and put that in a fingerstick meter. Now, for the sickest patients, typically on what's called intensive insulin therapy, the recommended number of times this could be done could be as much as eight or 10 times per day.
The introduction of CGM or continuous glucose monitoring started a sea change in diabetes management by providing real time data with a wearable 10-to-14-day sensor about the size of a small coin. The sensor provides consistent readings while you're wearing the device, and the readings can be seen even on your phone.
These technologies have become increasingly easy to use, with the introduction of new features like factory calibration, smaller transmitters, even the elimination of transmitters, smart device integration, be it phones, watches, pumps and improvements in sensor accuracy, the devices are now accurate enough to be used for insulin dosing decisions, which has eliminated the need for traditional fingerstick readings. Increased incorporation of artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities has also helped train personalize algorithms getting us closer to the promise of an artificial pancreas that can mimic the functioning of a healthy pancreas that you and I might have.
And as these devices are more broadly utilized, improved on and reimbursement improves, we believe it paints a picture where people with diabetes can achieve near normal levels of glycemic control. Again, the same way that people with a healthy pancreas do. To us, that's one of the holy grails in healthcare.
While most CGM usage to date has centered around the roughly four million domestic type one and two patients on intensive insulin therapy, we believe clinical data and new virtual care platforms can expand the role of CGM technology in helping an increasing number of type two diabetics achieve better glucose control through more informed decision making.
Non intensely managed diabetics make up over 90% of the type two diabetic population or more than 25 million patients in the U.S., five times larger than the core, intensely managed market today. with an eye on the longer term, a number of companies are also developing internal software capabilities and pursuing partnerships with payers, integrated care systems, and lifestyle coaching apps.
And these programs include anything from intermittent CGM use among high-risk type two patients, meaning maybe use CGM several months out of the year all the way to regular CGM usage among all type two patients. We believe these efforts can meaningfully expand that CGM addressable market.
Longer term, we believe CGM can go well beyond the already expansive and underpenetrated diabetic market and into the broad market of population health. Glucose control is one of the key tenets to preventing progression to more serious diseases.
Though early, data suggested that there may be high glucose variability in non-diabetics, which in turn is associated with accelerated onset of disease, be it vision, cardiovascular, or future diabetes. As such, while there's a lot more work to be done, we believe CGM technology has the potential to help all types of people, diabetic or not, make choices that can improve their quality of life and perhaps more importantly, their life span.