Diabetes technology firms working together thanks to new group

By Editor
27th November 2019
Medical devices, Technology

A new “inclusive” working group of industry representatives has been formed with the aim of “encouraging collaboration” in a bid to improve care for people with diabetes, according to a Roche senior executive.

The Association of British HealthTech Industries (ABHI) has launched a diabetes section, enabling diabetes technology companies to work together in the first forum of its kind.

The British In Vitro Diagnostic Association (BIVDA) has a diabetes group, but the membership has historically been limited to companies involved in traditional blood glucose monitoring, whereas the ABHI group is for any health technology company with an interest in diabetes care from CGM and insulin pumps to apps.

Industry has got to work together and find a common cause – it’s better to work together to improve the lives of people with diabetes. Conn O’Neill, Roche Diabetes Care

Each member of the ABHI also adheres to a code of conduct just like the one followed by pharmaceutical companies, governed by the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI).

Conn O’Neill, Public Affairs Lead at Roche Diabetes Care, is one of the founding members. He said: “At Roche, we are committed to improving diabetes care in the UK. However, we firmly believe the improved management of diabetes cannot just be addressed by a single company. Industry has got to work together and find a common cause – it’s better to work together to improve the lives of people with diabetes.

“We are therefore a keen participant and advocate of this new ABHI diabetes group and believe this new inclusive working group will bring together technology-focussed companies, encouraging collaboration and positive partnership.”

Reflecting upon the success of previous collaborative initiatives such as initiating the development of a type 1 technology pathway, Conn said he hoped this new group would provide a voice for the diabetes technology industry. The ABHI has already been successful in leading collaboration in areas such as vascular, orthopaedics and diagnostics whilst such groups have a long history in the pharmaceutical space.

Health leaders from organisations such as NHS England and NICE have been known to call upon industry to pull together for the greater good. The formation of this group represented an opportunity for companies to find areas of commonality in their responses to the NICE guidelines consultation.

Other members of the ABHI diabetes working group include Ascensia Diabetes Care, Abbott, Dexcom, Insulet and Medtronic.

The ABHI is the UK’s leading industry association for health technology. Members, including both multinationals and small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), supply products from syringes and wound dressings to surgical robots and digitally enhanced technologies.

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