ResMed connects vents to the cloud

‘It’s about time,’ says one HME provider
Friday, May 20, 2016

SAN DIEGO – With Medicare stepping up scrutiny for vents, ResMed believes it has a way to keep them a viable business for HME providers.

The company on May 16 announced plans to bring cloud connectivity and its remote patient monitoring software, AirView, to its Astral vents later this year.

“The whole industry is watching to see how the guidance for vents is changing,” said Jeremy Malecha, vice president of project management for the Global Healthcare Informatics business unit. “Part of our goal at ResMed is to make providers more efficient and effective, so they can stay ahead of the curve.”

The company says AirView helps improve operations by allowing providers to download data from vents remotely, reducing the need for home visits. Providers can also use the software to identify patients who are doing well with their therapies and those who aren’t, allowing them to better allocate resources.

ResMed has already brought AirView to bear for CPAP devices, products for which providers now have to prove compliance and for which competitive bidding has drastically reduced reimbursement.

“All of a sudden, you had to put more work in to get objective data, only to get paid less money,” Malecha said. “The only way you could then efficiently and effectively manage that population was by leveraging technology.”

ResMed expects tying its vents to AirView could add thousands of patients to the 2.5 million already being monitored by software.

“There has been a really strong appetite for it with sleep therapy, and one of the questions that we’ve gotten along the way is, ‘When are you going to have this for vents?’” Malecha said.

That pretty much sums it up for provider Gregory LoPresti.

“My comment is, ‘It’s about time,’” said LoPresti, senior vice president and CEO at Upstate HomeCare in Clinton, N.Y., which provides both sleep and vent therapy, and uses AirView for the former. “My only frustration has been, it’s not happening soon enough.”

ResMed next has its sights on bringing remote patient monitoring capabilities to portable oxygen concentrators. It bought Inova Labs, a maker of POCs, earlier this year.

“That’s something we’ve been open about, but there’s no specific timeframe,” Malecha said. “We push technology in everything we do, and we’re doing it as fast as we can.”

Ultimately, with CPAP devices, vents and POCs all tied to AirView, ResMed offers providers a way to streamline care, especially for patients with more complex and varying diseases states.

“It’s getting a complete picture of what’s going on with that patient, so you know where to focus your resources at the right time to get the better outcome,” Malecha said.