Compliant patient, efficient provider

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

In a move they believe will make patients more compliant and HME providers more efficient, two of the largest manufacturers of CPAP devices have rolled out mobile and web-based sleep therapy tools.

SleepMapper by Philips Respironics and SleepSeeker by ResMed allow patients to, among other things, set goals, receive feedback, view tutorials and access data on apnea or hypopnea events and mask leaks.

“There’s evidence that simple feedback helps change behavior,” said Mark Aloia, Ph.D, senior director of global clinical research at Philips Healthcare. “People who lose weight and maintain it—78% of them weigh themselves every day.”

Compliance is something patients and providers often struggle with. For patients, it’s not easy sleeping with a mask on their face that’s tethered to a machine. For providers, it’s a matter of getting paid; several years ago, CMS began requiring proof of compliance within 90 days for continued use. 

Philips Respironics and ResMed believe their tools, along with online resources, can be the push that shoves patients toward compliance.

“There is a spectrum of patients,” said Michele Cambou, product manager for sleep disordered breathing at ResMed. “We’re looking at those 50/50 patients and what will knock them over the edge into compliance.”

Philips Respironics and ResMed hope having more compliant patients will help HME providers not only ensure reimbursement but also reduce the amount of time they spend educating and supporting them.

“You have patients right now that have a lot of problems and call providers a lot,” Aloia said. “Or they can’t solve a problem, and they give up. This tool could solve both. We’re hoping we see a decrease in the burden on providers and an increase in outcomes.”

Cambou added: “Providers can say, ‘We’re here for you, but you can also go here and get some of the same info.’ It’s really just helping them provide good service.”