Devices: Get The Data
commercializing GlucoMON® devices
Diabetech has begun the design/build process for our next generation of a small wireless devices to collect and manage data from blood glucose meters and sensors used in the management of diabetes. Our approach has always relied on not requiring the patient to use their cell phone; a major barrier to data collection. It just works! Thanks to the emergence of the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT), every organization who needs access to blood sugar data from their hardest to reach and most costly health plan members will be able to have it.
Diabetech's founder first invented this technology in 2001 immediately following his daughter's diagnosis with type 1 diabetes. Following years of rigorous clinical trials, Diabetech's GlucoMON®-ADMS was finally commercialized in 2009 through a close relationship with Telcare, Inc. resulting in the world's first all-in-one cellular glucometer (meter plus cellular connectivity built-in). We accomplished this design using the GlucoMON M2M integration platform. We also collaborated on a design for the first commercial version of a comprehensive wireless diabetes management platform to accelerate the realization of an augmented insulin delivery system. This design was submitted to the NIH for funding consideration and later on to the DiabetesMine D-Design Innovation Contest to raise awareness. In 2010, Healthimo Ltd. in the UK was created through a joint venture to address the UK market and specifically the needs of the NHS to create a more efficient and more effective model for diabetes in pregnancy. Fast forward to 2017 and there remains a massive opportunity to improve the user experience, data collection, patient engagement and cost within the broader realm of diabetes care.
Commercial information technologies for helping patients better manage chronic diseases like diabetes assume that:
doctors are willing to be at the center of day-to-day outpatient self-care;
every patient has a smart phone with a data plan; and,
every patient is willing to spend more time to share data with their doctor.
All of these built-in assumptions fail miserably when compared to the real world.
This high-tech data sharing scenario is a reality for fewer than 5% of the doctor and patient relationships. Because of the DiaTrends team's decade of primary research, including hands-on experience working with thousands of patients, we know that the vast majority of people will never use the current generation mobile apps. No wonder health plans refuse to pay for them.
The team working to commercialize the Diabetech research base is informed like no other. Starting in 2001, Diabetech developed 6 wireless diabetes devices and conducted more than 20 high quality research pilots. More than $4M went into field testing GlucoMON®-ADMS and intensive management protocols defining how the technology can best be applied in various scenarios. Based on recent shifts in the health care market, there is an expanded opportunity to improve access to the benefits of automatically collected diabetes data first identified by Diabetech's research program. We know that in order to have a significant impact on the masses, passive data collection is an absolute requirement. Only then can we hope to attract and engage patients to change behavior. Diabetech pioneered this field with proven effective methods involving data driven interventions.
Diabetech's research culminated in several peer reviewed journal publications. This body of work provides the rationale for payors to commit major funding for commercial deployments rather than limiting support to what seems like a never ending stream of pilot studies.
Doctors and other medical professionals do not get paid to review outpatient self-reported data. Patients are far too busy to bother with uploading blood glucose meters and other biometic sensors.
Since 2009, when Diabetech first licensed its technology, companies selling data-driven patient management devices and programs have continued to struggle. This is because every company in the space is totally dependent on a scenario built for motivated patients using a smart phone with a data plan. These companies also assume that the patient's doctor is willing to review their patient's blood sugar data and that they will then prescribe timely adjustments to the patient. This belief has proven time and again to exist only as fantasy.
In response, these same companies believe that their systems will be more effective and attractive to payers if doctors had access to even more data. Thus, the push for incorporating the patient's photos of meals, accelerometer data from exercise bracelets, location, temperature, blood pressure, pulse oximetry and every other sensor under the Sun. "Combine all of this data in an Artificial Intelligence platform and the problem could be solved", so they want payers and investors to believe. Meanwhile, proven elegant patient self-directed protocols sit idle.
The Token is the only IoMT gateway capable of capturing accurate outpatient data from high cost, hard to reach patients.
A lot has happended since 2009. Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) has become nearly pervasive. And, the numbers of people with poorly controlled diabetes continues to grow at an alarming rate along with corresponding costs to payers and society in general.
Diabetech is already developing the smallest, lowest cost, coolest and easiest to use standalone device for managing and collecting data from outpatient biometric sensors used by people with diabetes. Clinical trials of this enhanced data-driven coaching program is targeted for 2017 with commercial availability anticipated in 2018.
We call our device the 'Token' and it is the basis of our proprietary method for overcoming the many barriers to improved patient outcomes. The Token does not rely on a cell phone or even a home network.
There are currently more than 350M people previously diagnosed with diabetes worldwide. That figure is growing each year at a compounded rate of nearly 5% per annum. The Diabetech's behavior change protocols have previously demonstrated the potential for a Return on Investment (ROI) of 3 to 6 months depending on the patient sub-group.
From this very large and growing pool, we are focused on the highest cost and hardest to reach patients. There are already plenty of tools available for patients who are willing to taken on the extra work of using highly interactive iOS and Android mobile apps, However, this demographic represents the least cost to the system. Our programs get actionable data from the majority of high risk, high cost patients because our technology is the easiest to use, most effective and available at the lowest cost vs. the alternatives.
The Business Model
Health plans and tech companies selling to health plans are still waiting for patient data to drive their systems. The Token gets data when other systems can't. That's why they work with us.
Diabetech is currently renewing several previous diabetes education contracts with major health plans.
If you haven't already done so, click on the video above to watch just one example of how the NHS use Diabetech's telehealth system. For example, the NHS licenses Diabetech's remote blood sugar monitoring program as a way to reduce cost while increasing quality.
The prospects for providing a significant technology upgrade to organizations familiar with the previous research translates into abbreviated sales cycles vs. our competitors. These prospects include the largest blood sugar monitoring device manufacturers, payers including Kaiser Permanente, the National Health Service in the UK, Blue Cross Blue Shield franchisees, and State's Medicaid disease management programs. We also know large self-insured employers including AT&T, and others.
The device and software system is approaching the market initially as a medical gateway and subsequently as an artificial intelligence driven diabetes management system.
Diabetech is currently in discussion with industry partners and early stage venture capital firms. Protoyping of the new device is in progress. Upon completion, we intend to crowd fund a portion of the startup fabrication and development costs. As part of the spinoff, Diabetech will retain an equity position and/or a royalty provision in exchange for licensing its intellectual property, trade secrets and other beneficial assetss contributed to the new entity. All inquiries welcomed.