The Kitchen Table

The Kitchen Table

Over the past week besides attending JPM we’ve had the opportunity to catch up with our many friends on the west coast. We purposely avoided the West Coast Mafia as per well-placed sources there is a contract out and best to avoid these people. To wit I say bring it on, but we digress.

Looking back on our many conversations we are somewhat surprised that so many very smart people don’t understand the kitchen table talk. These people who live relatively comfortable lives and make above average salaries don’t understand this talk as simply put they can afford the finer things in life. They just can’t relate to this talk because they don’t have to worry about what their health insurance deductible is as like we said before they can afford it.

However, in the real world, outside of the bubble of where these people live, lots of families with diabetes are having this discussion. A discussion that goes something like this;

“Honey we need to talk about the new health insurance plans being offered by the company. Although I don’t understand why they are changing plans again we have some choices to make. Now we can keep our old plan but instead of deducting $750 from every paycheck the new cost is $1,250 per paycheck. If we switch to alternate plan they would our cost would only be $575 per paycheck expect our deductible will increase from $2,000 per year to $6,000 per year. We also have the option of opting out of the coverage and getting health insurance on our own. With my diabetes, not sure that this is viable option.

Anyway, I’ve done a little math and honestly sweetheart we’re between a rock and hard place. As you know we are barely making ends meet now and the kids aren’t getting any cheaper either. It sure would be nice to have a few extra bucks every two weeks so I’m leaning towards the new plan as that puts another $175 bucks in our pockets. What do you think?”

Now before the PC police go off the deep end, in the real world this type of discussions go on between husbands and wives.

The fact is these people do not care about closed loop insulin delivery systems, they could care less about the latest whiz bang way cool cloud enabled device these real people are worried about whether they will have enough money to pay the mortgage. They are worried about providing for their children. Making matters worse they also know they must manage their diabetes otherwise they won’t be around to enjoy their children.

This is what so many in the industry miss, they just don’t get it as they have never had the kitchen table talk. This is why the West Coast Mafia is so off base with their assertion that the higher out of pocket cost of insulin can be directly linked to insulin companies raising the list price of insulin. The fact is these people will never get it as they have never had to decide between refilling their insulin prescription or feeding their families.

Diabetic Investor is constantly amazed to the lengths real people with diabetes go to too minimize the cost of managing their diabetes. These real people often must make some very tough choices and many times managing their diabetes comes out on the short end. It’s not like they don’t understand this but given the choice taking care of the family comes first.

Way cool whiz bang devices are the furthest thing from their mind.  It’s about time more people in the industry understood this and showed a little empathy. These patients aren’t interested in way cool whiz bang cloud enabled technology they are concerned about having enough money to feed their families, cloth their children and pay next month’s mortgage.