Patient engagement key to compliance, Green says

Over a five-year period, a compliant patient generates $1,569 in revenues vs. $410 for a non-compliant patient
Friday, April 3, 2015

LAS VEGAS – CPAP providers need to look beyond setups to boost their bottom lines, says Mary Beth Green, who spoke at Medtrade Spring last week.

“The diagnosis of the OSA patient has declined,” said Green, senior marketer of business solutions for Philips Respironics. “(Add to that) the shock of competitive bidding and its impact on private pay, along with increased documentation requirements, and providers need to pinpoint opportunities to increase revenues.”

One way to increase revenues: Improve CPAP compliance, which hovers, on average, at 55%, Green says.

During the first three months of therapy, both compliant and non-compliant patients generate about $110 in revenues. Over a five-year period, however, a compliant patient generates $1,569 in revenues vs. $410 for a non-compliant patient, Green says.

Providers have their best shot at improving compliance during the first three months of therapy, Green says. Here’s how:

Know thy patient

Understanding who patients are and where they are with their therapy is crucial to providing feedback that builds their confidence, says Tony Ross.

“When you provide feedback, are you motivating that patient or telling them that they need to do better?” said Ross, senior field marketing manager at Philips Respironics. “Wearing a CPAP is not natural and you don’t want to provide too much negative feedback to someone who is struggling.”

Ross recommends a slower approach to meeting the standard of wearing a CPAP for four hours a night.

“What if you started lower, then worked that patient up to four hours?” he said.

Be tech savvy

With 33% of Americans looking online to research health information, technology needs to be part of the provider’s toolbox to improve compliance, says Ross.

“Mobile apps are great tools to get patients involved,” he said. “They provide feedback and improve adherence.”

An added benefit: Technology can help providers become more efficient themselves, says Ross. 

“How many times are you calling patients,” he said. “Automating patient outreach can reduce labor by 59%. Use your time wisely.”