Cure Medical embraces new role as innovator
NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. – Cure Medical’s recent launch of the M14XL intermittent catheter, the longest available on the market today, is only the most recent example of how the company prioritizes end users.
Cure Medical began developing the cath two years ago after a conversation with an end user at a spina bifida event turned on a lightbulb in CEO John Anderson’s head.
“He just wondered why all these caths were so short—a male cath is typically 16 inches or shorter,” he said. “He said it’d be great if you could use the cath and then throw the whole thing away, and not worry about the extension tubing.”
The M14XL is 25 inches long and comes complete with lube and sleeve, eliminating the need for extension tubing. It’s also curved to fit into a pocket-sized wrapper, so it’s not the size of a “French loaf,” Anderson says.
Additionally, the longer cath means users don’t have to transfer to self-catheterize, helping to alleviate the shoulder pain that some experience from repeated transfers. (Users are advised by their doctors to self-catheterize four to six times per day.)
“Everyone says the voice of the customer matters,” said Lisa Wells, founder and director of Wheel:Life, which counts Cure Medical as one of its founding sponsors. “Cure is walking the talk, and putting their money where their mouth is.”
Cure Medical’s strong focus on end users has everything to do with the fact that its founder, Bob Yant, is a C5 quadriplegic. When he and Anderson launched the company in 2008, they decided to donate 10% of their net profits to spinal cord injury research. Anderson says they’ve donated “hundreds and hundreds of thousands of dollars” so far.
“Bob literally hopes they go out of business one day, because if someone finds a cure for SCI, they won’t need catheters anymore,” Wells said.
Anderson, who previously worked for Coloplast, one of the largest makers of caths, says Cure Medical started off making “similar but better” products. Now that it has found its groove, the company is embracing its new role as innovator.
“We thought initially, if we could sell 100,000 caths a week, it would be a good business for us,” he said. “Now we’re at more than 1 million. It’s really taken off.”