Climbed to date: 18,500 ft

So this morning I woke up and read this article about Novartis attempting to “protect their assets” in the third world pharmaceutical industry that is beginning to develop. Rather than trying to help the developing world stand on its own two feet and make its own medications so we no longer need to enlist celebrities and the UN to go overseas and dispense life-saving pharmaceutical supplies, the benevolent giant is suing to ensure that any new markets in the developing world will remain dominated by their products. Not going to lie, reading that kind of thing makes me angry. I mean, I know that this kind of thing is always lurking in the shadows of the legal system the world over, but hearing about it just twists that knife.

Back in 05 there was some hot air about getting some emergency measures passed by the FDA to facilitate the development of generic insulin which could save state run health insurance  programs (as well as the scores of individuals who can’t afford health insurance and pay out of pocket) a lot of money but 7 years later…I haven’t seen or heard of any generic insulin available in the North America–and the once backwater areas where “sketchy” drug-making could occur unfettered are now developing into profitable markets that must be reigned in.

So forgive me if I sound jaded in my unwillingness to accept prohibitively overpriced, aggressively patented new pharmaceutical gadgets as the cost of progress, when the proven, established and potentially affordable methods are being withheld to maintain the value of market shares. While millions of people are forced to scrape by without insurance and pay exorbitant prices out of pocket for the plain vanilla, standard treatment that has been largely the same for the last several decades, very little public advocacy is in effect to make the tried and true treatment for type 1 diabetes more affordable–IE generic insulin. Rather, all the rage is about new delivery systems–and why not? With NEW technology comes the royalties on commercialization–you know, the creation of all the NEW STUFF that you will soon need to be normal and healthy. There isn’t royalty money in simply making insulin affordable even though that would do a great deal of good for diabetics the world over.

So with that percolating in my system I decided to go out climbing. My sugar was 184 after eating the same breakfast with the same dose as every day for the last two weeks. I was debating how or if I should correct my sugar. I was tired and feeling a bit distraught from other things happening in my personal life and it occurred to me that I could just take a bit more insulin and climb only the bare minimum for the day. So I thought about it for a minute and decided not to do that and do the opposite of that. Take the smallest possible dose and climb harder and further. By the time I made it to the top of Mission Gorge I was correcting a gentle low with Blueberry Crisp Clif Bar after tacking on 1250 feet of vertical gain. I shot some pictures with the new fisheye lens that helped me better assess the strengths and weaknesses of this new tool…

 

Frustration turned into a great day out  and reaffirmed my  decision to go with my gut, take my chances with low blood sugar and leave the Kool Aid on the shelves…