IoT Business Case: US Medical Insurance Logging
There are many potential IoT applications when it comes to health care. One application involves logging usage of durable medical equipment (DME) for insurance coverage.
Medicare requires that prescribed medical devices, such as CPAP machines and other DME, be shown to be used as prescribed at least 70% of the time to be covered for financial reimbursement. US insurance companies have similar requirements.
Historically, without IoT, this would be done by the patient logging usage manually, which often resulted in errors and non-compliance. By adding the ability for the DME to automatically log utilization, you can more accurately measure usage data and send it along to the insurance companies. Automatic logging can dramatically increase compliance, which leads to higher reimbursement rates by the insurance companies. It also provides better feedback data to health care providers, allowing them to adjust therapies as needed and improve patient outcomes.
Some examples of DME that can use automatic logging:
- CPAP machines – Resmed is an example where it is already in use
- eNeura Migraine device – Cellular communications connectivity was added, software was modified to record and upload information as it happens. Learn more about our work on this device at https://f3wireless.com/enuera/
- Oxygen generators
- Mobility scooters
Although cellular is often the easiest way to add connectivity, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or a USB device are other viable options. There also is flexibility in where the connectivity is added. The DME itself can be modified to add log-in capabilities, or a device can be created independent of the original equipment. The vital element is the sensors that will determine when the DME is in use.
Automatic logging capabilities on DMEs can also tie back to the main business drivers of IoT: 1) Make money, 2) Save money, 3) Legal compliance, and 4) Reputation protection.
Companies that design and build DMEs can add logging capabilities as an extra selling point. Additionally, companies that sell and service DMEs can add automatic logging as an after-market feature. In either case, it would be an attractive option to potential customers who are concerned with equipment reimbursement – which usually occurs through compliance with Medicare and other insurance companies.
Is your company involved with the design, manufacturing, sale or servicing of durable medical equipment? Are you interested in adding automatic logging capabilities but aren’t sure where to start? F3 can help you determine the best wireless solutions to fit your product, and help you bring it to market.