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National Sleep Therapy Raises CPAP Adherence

July 31, 2017

National Sleep Therapy, a provider of equipment and services to patients with sleep apnea that uses a "closed-loop" model of follow up care with patients throughout the duration of sleep therapy, has announced the release of new data that indicate that 88.5 percent of the patients they serve meet the Medicare standard for continued use of the Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) device compared to a national rate of approximately 50 percent.

The 50 percent adherence rate during the three month evaluation period is attributable to varied factors, including that many patients find the device intrusive or uncomfortable. When patients fail to adhere to the therapy, they lose coverage for the CPAP equipment and in most cases their health worsens. The National Sleep Therapy approach suggests a new method for boosting CPAP adherence that will improve quality of life for patients and lead to significant cost savings for Medicare. The findings can be found in a newly published white paper.

"We believe that the data we have collected demonstrates how providers can greatly improve the CPAP experience for sleep apnea patients leading to better clinical outcomes and improved cost effectiveness," said National Sleep Therapy President Eric Cohen. "The promise of reduction in waste for Medicare and other insurers can't be overstated. Too many CPAP devices get placed in a closet after just a few short days, while Medicare pays for a three month therapy period."

When a patient is first diagnosed with sleep apnea, many struggle with questions about the proper course of treatment. Without a proper education about the health impact of untreated sleep apnea and a comprehensive support system in place, patients often lack the clinical understanding and motivation to overcome the occasional obstacles that accompany use of the equipment, such as getting used to sleeping with a mask and hose every night.

National Sleep Therapy has achieved a higher adherence rate through its "touchpoints" model where patients have many different points of contact with their doctor and with the company as they become familiar with the CPAP device. Of utmost clinical importance is the very first touchpoint with the patient: the CPAP set-up. Using multi-media and new technologies like the iPad, patients are given a thorough education and set of expectations that promotes compliance. The company has developed proprietary software systems that track patients each night and alert clinicians to call patients proactively. In addition, these touchpoints include: online portals where patients can monitor their own CPAP usage; text messages to alert patients when compliance is low; links to support videos that illustrate how patients' bodies function with and without CPAP use; and an extensive network of sleep experts to call upon.

"By properly helping patients onto the best road to compliance and connecting with them throughout the process, we are creating a stronger foundation for successful CPAP use," said Peter Falkson, CEO of National Sleep Therapy. "As more insurers create a CPAP benefit similar to the one provided by Medicare, our model becomes an important tool for patients to achieve greater success and for insurers to reduce waste."

National Sleep Therapy