Ultra Mini and Virtual Tracker: Less, and More

Backing up just a little to somewhat more traditional diabetes technology, I’m overdue in introducing two new products showcased at this summer’s AADE conference:

* The OneTouch UltraMini, a variation on LifeScan’s compact-sized Horizon meter (pitcured here),  Meter_horizon_1which is available only overseas.  It’s cute, ay?  The motto on the new UltraMini model is “no bells, no whistles, no complicated screens… testing made small and simple.”  Its memory saves only your last 50 glucose readings (hence the super-compact size, I suppose).  Looks like a great option if you’re looking for less: weight and features to fuss with.   

(Oh, and the Mini model thankfully uses the standard OneTouch line test strips, so switching should be painless for existing LifeScan customers.  Hooray for companies that “get it” about test strip compatibility!)

* The Virtual Tracker from HMD BioMedical, on the other hand, is for those looking for more — a lot more.  It’s a complete system including a glucose meter (GlucoLab brand) and a “cradle” port forVirtual_tracker loading the stored readings and sending them over the Internet to a database that can be viewed by you, and your doctor/educator or anyone with authorization from anywhere in the world.  The goal naturally being that your doctor, educator, etc. can analyze the data to help you optimize your glucose control.

Sounds like a nifty way to make sure that all those glucose readings we take actually make it to our healthcare team.  But (big “BUT”) this hails back to the reimbursement issue discussed here recently with regards to CGM: will insurers pay for professionals’ time in poring over all this data?  Plus, we all know that “glucose readings alone are only part of the picture.” 

Me personally, I’m a more-data kinda patient, as you know from my championing of emerging continuous monitoring technology.  But here’s some food for thought: the local university diabetes center that helped put me on the CGM had a “policy” against “external software” that prohibited them from loading any DexCom software on their computers.  Now how the heck is the CGM data supposed to help me if my endo’s not even allowed to look at my data?  Analyze that…


2 Responses

  1. Rich
    Rich October 2, 2006 at 8:06 pm | | Reply

    With respect to the UltraMin, the US product says “the meter stores a maximum of 50 blood glucose test results.”
    I have not tested that feature yet as we just put it into the “emergency rotation” in my wife’s purse. (Our pre-teen daughter still needs Mom sometimes.)
    It is a nice size, but not as small as the Flash. And it has no port to export to the OneTouch software.

  2. Cath
    Cath October 9, 2006 at 9:53 pm | | Reply

    I saw this and got one. It is easier to take with me, fitting in a pocket so I donot need a purse. I’m not worried about the tracking in the device becaus I track on my palm using Diabetes Pilot and Glucose one. Yes, two places are better than one. Both back up to the computer.
    Thanks for mentioning it.

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