Has remote management of patients and their POCs come of age?
Since the introduction of portable oxygen concentrators (POC) in the 1970s, patients with respiratory issues have experienced a dramatic improvement in the quality of life. There has been a marked increase in people diagnosed with COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder) and, consequently, the market for POCs is expected to hit $2.8bn by 2025.
In recent years, home oxygen providers’ reimbursement for home oxygen systems in the US and across Europe has been decreasing, forcing many to find ways to reduce costs. This has resulted in increased use of POCs – along with embedded smart technologies to improve monitoring and lower maintenance costs.
Harnessing the latest advances in mobile/cellular and GPS tech, some the most advanced POCs can now help both clinicians and home oxygen providers to monitor the device remotely to improve patient care.
These devices, such as GCE Healthcare’s Zen-O and Zen-O lite POCs, have a built-in SIM card enabling providers to review the POCs’ usage history – making sure patients have the right system and are adhering to their oxygen therapy.