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Published on 17 October 2022

Building connections for personalised diabetes solutions

Many of us are used to getting what we want with the click of a button. Sharing a song from our phone over a speaker or tracking our fitness progress with a watch and an app - connecting different devices via wireless Bluetooth® technology is part of everyday life.

For medical devices, the world still looks a bit different. Although many healthcare solutions do use Bluetooth, it’s still rare to securely connect different brands of insulin pumps, smartphones and continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) systems with each other. 

Connectivity and interoperability are essential for evolving diabetes management solutions and bringing more automatisation to the daily routine of people with diabetes - making their lives easier by taking on some of the work diabetes management entails, like calculating and dosing insulin multiple times a day. 

People with diabetes also rarely have the choice of connecting their favourite devices from different manufacturers, building a personalised solution that fits their individual needs best. Existing solutions are often proprietary or need to be designed anew for each collaboration in order to ensure the necessarily high security standards.

A Roche team sets out to change standards
Christoph Fischer, Principal R&D Engineer at Roche Diabetes Care, is working to change this. Together with his team, regulators and external partners, he led the development of a standardised toolbox that enables secure interoperability between medical devices and services for different manufacturers. It’s called Authorization Control Profile (ACP) and Service (ACS). 
 
For their contributions to developing and successfully testing the toolbox with multiple partners in the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG), the team has received the Bluetooth Working Group award for their outstanding contributions. “We’re very grateful for this recognition because this gives us the opportunity to further share what we’ve created and make a real difference for the way people with diabetes can manage their condition. It shows us that we’re on the right track and we’ll continue driving our efforts to offer patients more choice by providing the interoperability between different devices,” says Christoph Fischer. 
 
Building an open ecosystem
Roche Diabetes Care has long been committed to building an open ecosystem, a network of interconnected devices and services that brings together both its own and partners’ multiple solutions. The goal is to make it as easy and seamless as possible for people with diabetes to connect their favourite devices, like insulin pumps and continuous glucose monitoring systems.
 
This open ecosystem provides the foundation for Roche Diabetes Care’s integrated Personalised Diabetes Management (iPDM), a holistic, patient-centric approach that puts people with diabetes at the centre of their care. 

“This new standard enables us to make secure connectivity readily available and invite other companies to join our ecosystem with their own innovations,” explains Christophe Mauge, Head of Global R&D. “This way, people with diabetes will at one point be able to have free choice over the solution they want to use - because everything will be connected to personalise the diabetes management around their specific needs.”

The ACP/ACS is available on the Bluetooth website.
 
The winning team: Christoph Fischer & Christian-Alexander Luszick, Rick Wilson, Craig Carlson, Bob Sabo & David Sempsrott.