There is no cure
Since it’s the Friday before the SuperBowl and nothing much is really going on we decided to check in on an old friend. Since CGM has replaced BGM as the standard for glucose monitoring, since LifeScan is no longer owned by JNJ and Bayer is no longer Bayer there aren’t many BGM companies left that actually report results. So this morning we checked in on our friends at Roche who reported results yesterday.
It was nice to see that even though we haven’t paid too much attention nothing much has changed. Heck even the slide format hasn’t changed. Sales in diabetes continue to shrink and we got a good laugh that sales of insulin delivery systems, yes Roche does sell insulin pumps, were also declining. We decided not to view the full slide deck with all the appendixes something we did in the old days as they outlined the death march by region and quarter.
As we walked down memory lane remembering how this company who once ruled the BGM world with their Comfort-Curve test strip, how they paid over a billion bucks for Disetronic, how they then ran Disetronic into the ground followed by running the BGM business into the ground we came across an entire slide devoted to their latest way cool whiz bang diabetes tool, the Accu-Chek SugarView app.
Stunned that Roche had something new we took a moment to see what this whiz bang way cool app does. Here is what the slide said;
“First app that determines blood glucose ranges by using the Accu-Chek Active test strip in combination with a smartphone camera
Bypasses the additional need for a blood glucose meter
Designed to help non-insulin-dependent people with type 2 diabetes or prediabetes live healthier lives
Provides decision and treatment support in-between doctors’ visits
Critical in low- and middle-income countries that often have limited access to care and scarce healthcare resources”
Now never mind that CGM systems can do what this way cool whiz bang app does only better. Never mind that CGM systems are getting cheaper, more patient friendly and moving from insulin using patients to all patients regardless of how they treat their diabetes. Nope Roche seems to feel there is a large enough market in low- and middle-income countries for this way cool whiz bang app. Not to digress but we wondered just how many patients in low- or middle-income countries can actually afford a smartphone but then we remembered this Roche a place where common sense does not exist.
Then we thought gee since this app works in conjunction with a smartphone camera why not add the additional functionality of a food database so that after taking a picture of the test strip the patient could then take another picture of what they are eating. The app then could combine all this information and make recommendations to the patient. Just how these patients would then act upon these recommendations is anyone’s guess, but damn wouldn’t this be so cool?
Listen after 20 plus years in this business we have seen some incredibly stupid ideas. We know stupid when we see it and this system ladies and gentlemen is off the charts stupid. However it does fall perfectly into the new paradigm of useless diabetes technology. It proves once again this stupid fascination with way cool whiz bang. It also proves that Roche hasn’t lost their knack for flushing money down the toilet.
With January coming to an end we aren’t that far away from our favorite holiday, April Fool’s Day. April Fool’s has been home to some of the greatest posts in Diabetic Investor history but try as we might to come up with something creative on that day, something that will make our subscribers chuckle it gets harder and harder each year as the companies in this wacky world come up with extraordinarily funny stuff on their own. Seriously there is no way we would even make up something this stupid.
See April Fool’s Day wouldn’t be that big of a deal had Momma Kliff waited another 10 minutes. Had Mom waited April Fool’s would be just another day on the calendar. But nope Mom had to push this kid out and set him on the path in this wacky world of ours. Little did she know the stupidity he would experience during his life. But she always said; Kid if there is one thing you’ll experience throughout your life it’s that there is no cure for stupid.
Have a great weekend everyone and enjoy the game. Our prediction Kansas City 48 San Francisco 37.