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Non-invasive glucose monitors choke the testing strips market

April 28, 2015
by Richard R. Rogoski
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Although the number of people receiving a diagnosis of diabetes continues to increase, the market for self-monitoring blood glucose (SMBG) meters and strips will remain sluggish for another year, according to a recently released report from Frost & Sullivan.

The self-monitoring device market, which posted $4.04 billion in revenue in 2014, is expected to increase only marginally to $4.18 billion through 2016.

Among the factors contributuing to the slowdown in the self-testing market are competition from generic products, cutbacks in Medicare reimbursements, Medicare’s national mail-order program and the development of continuous monitoring and non-invasive methods, all of which are reducing profits and affecting sales among retail pharmacies, according to the report.

“Finger-stick tests currently complement continuous devices," Divyaa Ravishankar, a senior industry analyst at Frost & Sullivan, said in a press release. "These invasive meters losing share to continuous devices is a long-term possibility. Non-invasive methods are becoming popular and may replace the SMBG market in the long run, given the reimbursement reductions and sequestration cuts in the United States. Alternative markers at the point of care, for instance the glycated albumin tests, can ease the reimbursement issues associated with the market and also provide a meaningful care in type 2 diabetic patients.”