A Long Wish List
It’s critical, therefore, that people with diabetes have access to effective tools for monitoring and managing their blood glucose levels. And their collective wish list of attributes making up that “effectiveness equation” is quite long.
“Surveys we’ve conducted and our day- to-day work show that people with diabetes value ease of use, accuracy, reliability, support for tracking the data they need every day to stay on top of their management—carbs, blood glucose, HbA1c, etc.—affordability, access [and] help that’s there when you need it,” said Matt Jewett, senior vice president and general manager for Indianapolis-based Roche Diabetes Care, U.S., which offers the Accu-Chek diabetes-care lineup.
Diabetics tend to live busy lives, just like everyone else, he noted. That reality is driving many of those wants and needs. Although they need to manage their condition on a daily basis, people with diabetes “don’t want to think about it all day.” They appreciate anything that can ease the stress and anxiety associated with their condition and everyday life.
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Rudy Thoms, senior vice president, continuous glucose monitoring commercial for Parsippany, N.J.-based Ascensia Diabetes Care U.S., agreed. “They want practical and intuitive tools that are flexible, easy to use and compatible with other aspects of their life and health care,” he said.
People with diabetes also want solutions to the issues they have with current diabetes management tools. For example, studies have shown that many diabetics end up with contamination or other issues when handling glucose strips, said Mike Tomasco, senior director of clinical affairs for Intuity Medical Inc., Fremont, Calif. And traditional blood glucose monitors are lifestyle disruptors for many people.
“Although newer options such as continuous glucose monitoring [CGM] address some of these barriers, not everyone is interested in CGM or has access to it. Consequently, fewer than 16% of people with diabetes use CGM,” Tomasco noted, citing U.S. diabetes statistics from the 2022 Seagrove Diabetes Blue Book. In line with trends that go across the health-care spectrum, digitalization and personalization also loom large on diabetics’ wish list.
“We live in an increasingly digital world, and people want insightful information immediately at their fingertips that can inform decisions about their individual health,” said Thoms.