HDI makes play for Medicare, Medicaid biz

Monday, April 30, 2007

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - Home Diagnostics executives believe that the company's new TRUEread blood glucose monitor could be its ticket to a greater share of the Medicare and Medicaid diabetes market.
And with an $80 million dollar war chest generated last September for its initial public offering, HDI's in great shape to take on its bigger competitors, said President and CEO J. Richard Damron.
"We're very excited," he said. "The domestic market for Type 2 diabetes is growing 8% annually, and we believe we are going to be able to take some share away from other companies because of the position of our company and new products."
In March, the company's TRUEread blood glucose monitor hit the market at a price point lower than HDI's existing products. That's because the TRUEread--unlike many products intended for the private insurance market--doesn't have a rebate built into its price. Private payers frequently demand rebates as compensation for processing claims for glucose monitors. Medicare and Medicaid do not allow rebates.
Since forming in 1985, HDI has tried to distinguish itself as the quality, low-cost alternative to the industry's giants--Roche, Lifescan, Bayer and Abbott Labs. Going public, Damron said, helped HDI raise its visibility and compete more aggressively with those companies. Not only did the company's IPO raise $80 million to help with developing products and expanding into international markets, but it also represented the business community's "stamp of approval."