See how you can predict complications in your COPD patients with this free eBook!
Improving Remote Monitoring in COPD Healthcare Management
As a physician, patient care optimization plays a significant part in the efficiency of your practice. Greater overall accuracy in data and enhanced monitoring for long-term COPD patients create a better strategy for observation and treatments in and out of a physician’s practice.
One of the foremost trends involves the usage of remote patient monitoring (RPM) to address the needs of high-risk patients, particularly those with COPD. Wearable medical devices with RPM capabilities have become a necessary part of modern telemedicine. Many physicians and medical professionals have extensive experience with remote monitoring in COPD management, often with mixed results and inaccuracies.
Due to the development of new technology, new forms of remote monitoring in COPD management encompass the possibilities of constant patient care through integrated systems.
Known as continuous remote patient management, or CRPM, this technological advance improves on the many drawbacks associated with traditional RPM and achieves new possibilities that were previously unrealized. Oxitone’s wearable CRPM medical device, the Oxitone 1000M, is revolutionizing the medical industry, providing a greater level of COPD patient care.
The focus of this ebook is to provide a thorough understanding of how traditional RPM is becoming more obsolete for modern medical usage. We will also explore how the Oxitone 1000M’s CRPM supplants traditional RPM, solving common problems for remote monitoring in COPD management to optimize your medical practice.
Understanding the Limitations of Traditional Remote Patient Monitoring
Physicians and patients have always relied on current and emerging technology to provide healthcare that improves quality of life and outcomes. While initially adopted as a merger of technology and the medical field (known interchangeably as “telemedicine” or “telehealth”), RPM is a logical step in the history of improving response times with available patient data.
Traditional remote monitoring in COPD management has been a significant factor in treating this condition over a longer timeline. Crucial data is accessible through data uploads from a patient’s wearable device for analysis, and in-patient visits can be reduced depending on performance. In theory, traditional RPM was developed to more accurately address the care and treatment of a wide variety of life-threatening diseases in the most efficient time frame possible. However, several key limitations have become apparent to physicians that not only lead to incomplete healthcare but can also exacerbate the conditions of high-risk COPD patients.
Multiple studies have shown that traditional remote patient monitoring provides minimal benefits. One particular study conducted in 2017 showed that traditional RPM had many negative trade-offs and drawbacks to long-term patient care, including:
- Potential for the misdiagnosis of developing symptoms, which can lead to a lower patient quality of life and even an increased potential for malpractice lawsuits
- More expensive manual follow-ups for patients, including costly ER visits and hospitalizations
- Anxiety and panic caused by patient’s self-misdiagnosis
- A lack of continuity and gaps in reporting recorded data beyond short-term timelines
- Outdated threshold alerts that don’t address health changes in real time, leading to false positives and failures in providing optimal care
- Compatibility issues between older devices and newer medical technology, causing delays and misreporting of relevant patient data
Due to physicians’ concerns about delivering accurate care to COPD patients, these problems and many more have been extensively studied by various medical device manufacturers. Researchers discovered that these problems were eliminated or mitigated through the incorporation of new technology, namely, a continuous monitoring system for COPD patients that addressed developing symptoms, initiated alerts, and seamlessly transferred data.
A New Treatment Paradigm: Continuous Remote Monitoring in COPD Management
Digital medical devices for traditional RPM have become commonplace for nearly every medical application. For at-home usage and in between clinical visits, these technologically advanced tools can measure vital signs. Such devices include blood pressure monitors, thermometers, glucometers, and fingertip pulse oximeters.
When data is brought into a clinic from these devices or transmitted electronically, physicians can analyze the data and create long-term healthcare solutions that more accurately reflect a patient’s status. However, one problem with this type of traditional remote monitoring is that the periods between observation by a trained physician and the patient’s daily life are unmonitored. Episodic data only paints a partial picture of a patient’s daily condition of COPD-related symptoms, usage, and compliance.
As part of a disease like COPD, life-threatening symptoms can develop in a relatively short timespan. Unless a patient regularly visits a physician’s office or is observed during prolonged hospitalizations due to COPD-related flare-ups, there will be significant gaps in traditional monitoring that can affect a patient’s quality of life and eventually, cause premature death.
Traditional RPM can be beneficial, but it only provides episodic patient data rather than real-time patient data. Therefore, it is of limited value when dealing with high-risk COPD patients.
Instead, continuous monitoring solutions are becoming the norm in healthcare facilities worldwide. Recent advances in telehealth and its increased reliability as a tool for maximizing patient health is now possible through the development of CRPM. This methodology is implemented via wearable devices.
Worn by patients, CRPM devices transmit data directly to healthcare providers in facilities or hospitals, interfacing with smartphone apps, the cloud, Bluetooth, and direct data retrieval from USB connectors. Mirroring the fact that intensive care units (ICUs) employ continuous monitoring, CRPM devices are for high-risk COPD patients. Considering that more than 50% of hospital deaths occur in patients who are not continuously monitored, CRPM represents new possibilities in COPD patient care for physicians.
These CRPM devices are relatively new and forecasted to supplant traditional RPM to form a new paradigm of healthcare for remote monitoring in COPD management. Thanks to the predictive power of artificial intelligence combined with wearable medical technology, previous problems with remote COPD management have given way to real-time patient monitoring that has shown great potential for patients and healthcare professionals. Physicians now have reliable patient supervision through wearable CRPM devices to collect and transmit data as events occur, for immediate responses to potential emergencies. Since CRPM technology leverages predictive algorithms that detect even minor deviations from the established patient baseline, more accurate healthcare strategies can be administered to prolong patient life and increase quality of life.
Oxitone 1000M Solves Common Patient- and Physician-Related Problems Regarding COPD
Oxitone, a provider of wearable medical devices, has developed a leading-edge wearable device designed specifically for the remote monitoring in COPD management with the Oxitone 1000M. The 1000M provides solutions for a new era of enhanced patient care with its CRPM-focused design, implementing emerging technology that has been absent in traditional RPM.
Let’s take an in-depth look at the problems that physicians face on a daily basis with remote monitoring COPD management and how the Oxitone 1000M is an innovative solution for the future of strategic patient care.
Better Clinical Management and Outcomes
Problem: Maintaining an efficient medical practice depends on providing the best short-term and long-term care. Due to the nature of traditional RPM, there are many unnecessary bottlenecks and inaccurate data that can lead to the mismanagement of high-risk COPD.
Symptoms of COPD can worsen over time when left unaddressed. This is measured by forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1), the amount of air that a person can exhale in a single breath. Because COPD is a progressive disease, FEV1 that continually falls below 30% of a healthy person’s lung exhalation can lead to a patient’s condition worsening toward the fatal end stages of COPD.
As a reminder, the following are the stages of COPD in relation to FEV1 and related symptoms:
- Mild, or stage 1: FEV1 is above 80%. A patient’s symptoms are mild, and it is unnoticeable that they are experiencing the early stages of COPD.
- Moderate, or stage 2: FEV1 is 50-80%. A patient will begin to notice a chronic cough, excessive mucus, and shortness of breath.
- Severe, or stage 3: FEV1 is 30-50%. A patient now experiences a chronic cough and struggles to exercise or perform daily activities. Patients may also feel tired or sick.
- End stage, or stage 4: FEV1 falls below 30%. As the final stage of COPD, the aforementioned symptoms increase and significantly affect a patient’s daily life until death.
With each stage of COPD, the observable symptoms of hypoxemia (low blood oxygen), hypoxia (low oxygen in the body’s tissue), cyanosis (a bluish skin tone due to oxygen deprivation), and chronic respiratory failure become more apparent.
These symptoms coincide with progressively more severe flare-ups, requiring frequent hospitalization and more closely monitored physician care. It should be noted that although a person may get a little better between flare-ups, high-risk patients tend to not return to their previous condition and are at high risk for cardiovascular issues. Because of the weakened capabilities of the body, COPD patients become susceptible to a large number of respiratory diseases, including COVID-19 and influenza.
Physicians with traditional RPM methodologies and prescribed treatments may miss out on vital patient data that changes due to the episodic data reporting for COPD. These lapses increase the likelihood of more frequent flare-ups (increasing the risk of hospitalization), more frequent physician oversight, and eventually, death.
Solution: CRPM provides real-time data that is utilized for effective long-term treatment. Patients can avoid unnecessary ER visits and hospitalizations that can overwhelm a physician’s busy daily schedule and overall workload.
The Oxitone 1000M aids in the prediction and early detection of exacerbation and life-threatening events before they manifest. Accurate disease-specific reporting and the dynamic health status baseline ensures that physicians have a wealth of information at their disposal.
For example, if a prescribed exercise regimen leads to a series of appointments and visitations to a clinician, the data from the Oxitone 1000M can pinpoint these events and help physicians devise a better strategy for exercise that is in line with a patient’s current capabilities. This level of accuracy fills in the intermittent gaps of traditional RPM, which could miss potential problems in high-risk patients.
For patients with mild developing symptoms, such as a slightly elevated heart rate or chest discomfort, the Oxitone’s integrated system of alerts optimizes home treatment of mild exacerbation. Users are alerted to the potential danger of their monitored vital signs, stopping potential health problems before the need arises for emergency visits or more invasive procedures.
Continuous Monitoring Provides Constant Oversight
Problem: Symptoms of COPD and other high-risk chronic diseases need constant oversight, which has not been possible for most forms of traditional remote monitoring in COPD management. In a relatively short timespan, patients suffering from COPD can develop hypoxia, dangerously elevated heart rates, tightness in the chest, and susceptibility to respiratory diseases (such as COVID-19). This lapse in response from traditional RPM has led to suboptimal outcomes that may lead to dramatic risks for COPD sufferers.
Solution: Oxitone’s pioneering digital continuous care model, with its innovative AI-powered CRPM solution, addresses the symptoms of COPD, providing five levels of alerts that streamline necessary care delivery. This predictive power enables high-risk patients to seek necessary care ahead of time. Consequently, the acceleration of access to care can extend a patient’s quality of life and lifespan, making this wearable device a must-have for optimal patient care.
Because the Oxitone 1000M is a passive monitoring device, COPD patients are guaranteed around-the-clock monitoring. Patient compliance is a significant factor of continuous care, and the Oxitone 1000M catches trends before they occur by continually monitoring patient data, including:
- Pulse rate
- Heart rate variability (physiological stress)
- Skin temperature
- Sleep apnea and disorders
- Respiratory rate
The Oxitone 1000M is best used for the continuous monitoring of typical activities and treatments related to COPD, such as:
- Home treatment of mild COPD complications
- Oxygen therapy application
- Post-acute event rehabilitation
Reduction of Patient Anxiety and Improved Well-Being
Problem: Patient quality of life is a factor in a physician’s strategy of long-term treatment for COPD. Avoiding exacerbation of this disease and maintaining the patient’s positive mental health are significant factors for longevity.
However, traditional RPM devices and methodology have caused a “negative feedback loop” for patients who choose to measure their own vital signs. While these spot-check devices were intended to reduce health problems, the opposite effect tends to be true. High-risk patients want to self-diagnose due to gaps in physician care, ultimately self-diagnosing ailments that may not be problematic. The inability to correctly interpret data with a traditional RPM device can exacerbate a patient’s condition and negatively impact their overall health in both short-term and long-term outcomes.
Solution: The Oxitone 1000M provides a clear upgrade from traditional RPM methodologies, with a focus on efficient usability. Designed for patients, the Oxitone 1000M has CRPM monitoring capabilities that enable greater peace of mind through a passive system of continuous monitoring. Patients can rest easier knowing that their device is monitoring their vital signs throughout the day, without the need for direct oversight. The Oxitone 1000M generates smart notifications that have five levels of verification before initiating an alert. It never disturbs with false or random notifications. Utilizing the millions of integrated data points generated by hospital-grade continuous connected devices into effective, hyper-personalized, AI-aided therapeutic interventions, the Oxitone 1000M is the clear choice for top-tier care and accuracy.
The one-click access via Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) or built-in API to transfer data efficiently gives clinicians the ability to observe patient data in a streamlined fashion, not with endless menus and the steep learning curve of other wearable COPD devices.
The net effect of the Oxitone 1000M’s features is overall patient empowerment. With COPD patients in control of their health, there is minimized exacerbation of stress- and anxiety-related complications. Patients can rest easy knowing that they have the option to take an active role in their health or just rely on the Oxitone 1000M’s optimized, around-the-clock monitoring for automated alerts.
Common Wearable Devices Are Not Medical-Specific for COPD
Problem: Popular brands of wearable medical devices, such as the Apple Watch and Fitbit, are primarily designed as multi-use consumer devices. While they have useful functions related to health, such as monitoring calorie burn or counting steps (pedometer), these wearable devices do not have FDA clearance and cannot provide medical-grade data or comprehensive coverage of specific symptoms for high-risk diseases. This lack of features regarding symptom detection and focused design draws away from the utility of a device meant for high-risk COPD patients.
Even though these devices may detect warning signs of COPD symptoms, such as an elevated heart rate, older individuals who are not tech-savvy or do not have access to caregivers who can interpret relevant data in real time makes these multi-use wearable medical devices less than optimal.
There is also the issue of comfort when physicians prescribe certain medical devices. For COPD patients, fingertip pulse oximeters are commonly prescribed to measure vital signs. But these are not meant for continuous usage and involve a degree of discomfort that can lead to accuracy issues. Other COPD monitoring devices also do not take into account any issues of comfort, including the free flow of blood circulation and adjustability based on a patient’s preferences. Patients who experience discomfort with spot-check medical devices often are less inclined to use them as prescribed, leading to low compliance and inaccurate measurements of critical data.
Solution: The Oxitone 1000M is cleared by the Food and Drug Administration for usage in clinical settings as a wrist-worn pulse oximeter. The Oxitone 1000M picks up SpO2 and pulse rate with the same accuracy as traditional fingertip pulse oximeters, with the added benefit of CRPM monitoring and comfort for enhanced usage.
The core technology of the Oxitone 1000M is a proprietary FlexSense™ elastic optical aperture that embraces the ulna bone and doesn’t affect local blood flow for superior accuracy. The elastic optical aperture ensures superior monitoring continuity to enhance wearability and ultimately, patient compliance. Having a wearable device that is comfortable and accurate is essential for the long-term care of COPD, and users of the Oxitone 1000M report positively on its wearability and non-obtrusiveness during daily activities.
Compatibility with New and Developing Medical Technology
Problem: Every year brings changes in technology, protocols, and best practices in the medical field. Home monitoring devices have the obstacle of requiring continuous operation across the different platforms that medical practices use on a daily basis.
For COPD, there needs to be streamlined capability across every platform that clinicians and hospitals need for accurate care. For example, private practices may have trouble processing patient data or may receive delays between data transmissions. Similarly, software updates need to be continually approved and installed, possibly interrupting the transmission of data to physicians. Each of these compatibility issues can be potentially life-threatening, causing lapses in care and treatment.
Solution: The Oxitone 1000M was uniquely designed to address emerging technology trends in healthcare. Due to the reliance on telehealth in nearly every hospital and outpatient care facility, the Oxitone 1000M enables ease of access to data through its API/Bluetooth integration. It includes three patented innovations that combine AI’s predictive power with the convenience of wearable medical technology, enabling the clear definition of patient risk categories and accelerating access to care.
Experts in the field of wireless communication technology for medical use have cited BLE as a crucial factor in providing accuracy and responsiveness for medical usage. Designed with this technology in mind, the Oxitone 1000M uses BLE in healthcare settings for several reasons.
- Low-power operation: Designed for long uninterrupted usage, the Oxitone 1000M has a long battery life due to its low-power operation and rechargeability. Compared to coin-cell battery devices, the Oxitone 1000M is the superior option for reducing maintenance, which can be a problem for elderly and disabled individuals.
- Compatibility across platforms: The Oxitone 1000M is optimized for medical applications and transmitting data in formats requested by medical authorities. This interoperability ensures that products from different manufacturers can communicate with each other without interruption. Similarly, the 1000M is designed to coexist with other radio transceivers and cause no electromagnetic interference in other sensitive electronic devices.
- Security: Oxitone has put physical, administrative, and technical procedures/measures in place to prevent unauthorized access to patient data. These safeguards are continually updated to maintain high-level security and confidentiality in medical and personal settings.
Compliance is also reflected in a wearable CRPM device’s usability for patients. The Oxitone solution was designed with this aspect in mind, providing one-click real-time clinical continuous data access that enables immediate on-demand readings of:
- Hypoxia index
- Sleep data
- Physiological stress
- Behavior data
- Clinical reports
- Smart notifications
- Developing symptoms
This data can easily be presented to a physician or sent wirelessly to a healthcare facility.
Cost-Effectiveness for COPD Patients
Problem: COPD care is expensive for high-risk patients. As flare-ups from COPD become progressively worse, patients are inclined to be hospitalized or require ambulance transport to the ER more frequently. Considering that the average cost of a hospital stay in the United States is more than $3,000 per day, patients can experience significant financial liabilities over time that can be catastrophic.
Due to the nature of the disease, COPD limits a patient’s ability to earn a living and afford medical costs, ultimately exacerbating the symptoms of the disease. Additionally, many traditional RPM devices are prohibitively expensive, forcing patients and their families to make difficult decisions in regard to accurate long-term care.
Solution: The Oxitone 1000M was not only designed for accuracy and reliability for COPD treatment, but it’s also a cost-effective solution to mitigate potential finance-related problems.
With hospitalization, treatment, and ambulatory care being cost-prohibitive for many patients, the Oxitone 1000M’s continuous monitoring system enables them to experience the close monitoring of an ICU in a non-medical setting. Patients can more accurately self-diagnose problematic behaviors that worsen symptoms and can rely on the Oxitone 1000M’s levels of alerts that will inform patients when to seek necessary medical care.
The Oxitone 1000M is the optimal choice for patients who suffer from advanced stages of COPD. Physicians looking to deliver top-notch COPD care enhanced with emerging CRPM technology are choosing the Oxitone 1000M as the primary method to boost value-based healthcare. Patients who use the Oxitone 1000M can experience extraordinary patient, clinical, and economical outcomes at reduced medical utilization and cost compared to traditional RPM.
Physicians need an easy and timely follow-up with patients as COPD symptoms progress. In turn, COPD patients need a prompt response to emergencies and active monitoring of their vital signs for maximized quality of life. That’s why the Oxitone’s CRPM solution is leading the way and revolutionizing the care of COPD patients, adapting to the changing trends of the medical industry for a brighter future for all.
For more information on the Oxitone 1000M, read the specifications of this leading-edge CRPM wrist-wearable medical device.Here at Oxitone, we boost value-based healthcare by delivering extraordinary patient, clinical, and economical outcomes at reduced medical utilization and cost. Patients need a prompt response to emergencies. Physicians need an easy and timely follow-up with patients. Our mission is to transform chronic disease management and help save lives worldwide.
Let’s save lives together! To see how we help remote patient monitoring companies and physicians improve the management and care of high-risk patients, contact us today!