The concept of self blood glucose monitoring was introduced in India only a few years back and the industry has already grown to over Rs 150 crore, with a growth rate of 15-18 per cent in the last three years.
Out of the 40 million diabetics, only half a million currently check blood glucose levels on a regular basis using these solutions, say industry sources.
J&J was the first entrant into India with its ‘Ultra’ brand, and Roche Diagnostics, the world leader in this segment with its ‘Accu-Check’ solutions followed them in 2004. Currently Roche controls about 60 per cent of the market and J&J has about 30-35 per cent of the market share, according to industry sources.
“In the US, people having the disease check their blood glucose levels even up to six times a day, whereas in India, the patients don’t even check their blood glucose levels on a regular basis unless directed by their doctor. Studies say that diabetes induced death can be brought down by 52 per cent if the insulin levels in the body are regularly monitored and controlled,” says Sanjay Gupta, head of diabetes care, India and neighbouring markets of Roche Diagnostics.
“We priced our machine at just above Rs 1,000, and the strips are offered at Rs 20 for a 25 strip pack, which is the lowest in the market,” said the Wockhardt spokesperson.
While all the other companies are trying to market the product through doctors, Roche is trying to directly convey the message of self blood glucose monitoring to the masses.