HME News

DEC 2017

HME News is the monthly business newspaper for home medical equipment providers. This controlled circulation publication reaches 17,100 home medical equipment services providers, including traditional HME dealers & suppliers, hospital- and pharmacy-o

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smart Talk hme news / december 2017 / 11 Machine LearninG OXyGen ManaGeMent Keep an eye on telehealth By GEORGE COPPOla Q. how will telehealth impact my business in 2018 and beyond? a. The role of telehealth can enable the provider and clinician to review data transmitted via the equipment pave the path to home By StEVE WOGEn Q. how are artifi cial i ntelligence and machine learning helping ensure a smooth transition to heal at home and avoid hospital readmissions? a. Failures in our healthcare sys- tem increase post-acute spend for health plans by an estimated 20% to 25%, while patients face unnec- essary risks. One of the biggest gaps is lack of communication and collaboration between pro- viders and patients. New health- care innovations, such as AI and machine learning, are helping us optimize post-acute care and keep patients safer. By tapping into the latest tech- nology, we can place patients at the center of their care team— whether they are in the hospital or healing at home. For example, we can now use predictive algo- rithms to test, apply and create a personalized pathway for a patient's recovery, lessening post- acute recovery time, reducing avoidable hospital readmissions and decreasing the cost of care. By feeding patient outcomes back into these care algorithms, we cre- ate a virtual circle that improves care for everyone. For providers, AI and machine learning mean easy-to-use smart tools that help predict and fl ag potential obstacles in a patient's journey to recovery. By sharing valuable real-time information, we can also address gaps in care and communication that exist in healthcare silos today. For health plans, these tools can help optimize provider net- works and potentially reduce the nearly 75% of preventable hos- pital readmissions that cost the healthcare system more than $40 billion annually. By leveraging machine learning, we can under- stand which care providers best support patients' recoveries and address the risks they encounter after a hospital stay. hme Steve Wogen is chief growth offi cer for CareCentrix. Reach him at stephen. user's smart device connected to the oxygen therapy equipment at their home. Telehealth is emerging as a critical component of our health- care system and it has the poten- tial to signifi cantly improve some of the most challenging problems of health care networks and HMEs. Providers and health systems are both banking on the fact that this emerging technology will help to improve access to care, reduce operational costs, reduce readmis- sion rates, and promote patient compliance to treatment options. According to reports, the tele- health market is projected to be a $9 billion global industry by 2021 because of the need by healthcare providers to take a greater role in remotely monitoring patients who suffer from chronic conditions. No matter the trend, providers will benefi t from oxygen therapy equipment with telehealth capa- bilities. The No. 1 item, and the most practical item on their list, is the ability to track the location of the oxygen therapy device. Many times, oxygen therapy devices dis- appear from the fl eet and are only discovered once they are upload- ed for sale on a web auction site and the subsequent buyer experi- ences an issue and reaches out to the manufacturer for assistance or much needed maintenance. Second is the having the ability to trouble- shoot any alarm codes remotely, and understanding how the unit has been performing for its user and at what settings. Avoiding after- hours calls is paramount in keep- ing costs down for the HME. Both of these are good reasons to keep an eye out for what is available in the market and to build your fl eets accordingly. hme George Coppola is the director of marketing at CAIRE Inc. Reach him at

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