Transfilling technology: Providers offer ground-level view
YARMOUTH, Maine – The technology has been around for more than a decade, but there are still wild swings in provider opinion on transfilling.
On one end, there are providers like Woody O’Neal, who has more than 90% of his ambulatory patients on transfilling technology.
“We’ve used a very direct strategic deployment of this technology to eliminate the costs associated with maintaining an oxygen patient over a long period of time,” said O’Neal, vice president of O2 Neal Medical in Pelham, Ala. “I don’t know how, economically, you can support a patient any other way.”
Transfilling technology costs more upfront, O’Neal says, but it pays for itself in reduced deliveries.
The cost-ROI ratio isn’t so black and white, however, for providers like Chris Rice. He says he can bundle a portable oxygen concentrator and a stationary oxygen concentrator for less money and get the same results.
“We use transfilling technology sparingly,” said Rice, CEO of Diamond Respiratory Care in Riverside, Calif.
Like Rice, provider Fred Jackson uses transfilling technology only for certain patients, like those living in more rural areas.
“Where it fits in are the distant patients that we take care of that can be 60 miles away,” said Jackson, president of Salida Medical in Salida, Colo. “This area is so broad.”
Jackson says he has five transfilling devices, but POCs make up the majority of his fleet.
Whether or not they’re using transfilling technology, providers agree it’s more reliable than POCs.
“The downside with POCs is they’re not as reliable and they get more banged up, so you get more service calls,” Rice said.