Streamlining the complex process from sleep apnea diagnosis to treatment using digital health platforms meets shared mission of addressing the growing and undermanaged sleep apnea epidemic
Itamar Medical a medical technology company focused on the development and commercialization of non-invasive medical devices, solutions and a digital health platform to aid in the diagnosis of respiratory sleep disorders, today announced that it has entered into an agreement with Sleep Data Diagnostics and its virtual-care platform BetterNight and Sleep Data Holdings, a leading provider of home-based positive airway pressure (PAP) services. This agreement is designed to radically simplify the process by which both sleep and non-sleep referring physicians, such as cardiologists, can refer their patients for sleep apnea testing with WatchPAT™ through Itamar Medical and BetterNight’s platforms providing a full care pathway that includes testing, medical consultation, continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy, billing and reimbursement channels. The agreement is expected to increase patient access to WatchPAT testing without the need to leave their homes and provide physicians, with a focus on cardiologists, and their patients, with information and interventions for managing sleep apnea and improving health outcomes.
Itamar Medical and BetterNight will collaborate to provide physicians and their patients a fully integrated and streamlined solution. Itamar Medical will provide patients suspected of having sleep apnea with a sleep apnea diagnostic study, facilitate a consultation with a board-certified physician for study interpretation and receipt of a prescription for a recommended therapy, if needed, enabled by its digital health platform. When elected by the managing physician, BetterNight will provide home-based CPAP therapy care using its advanced monitoring algorithm and remote respiratory therapy consultation and manage insurance coverage verification, preauthorization and billing.
“Physicians, particularly cardiologists, are aware of the negative effects sleep disordered breathing can have on their patients. However, they face a variety of hurdles to ensuring that patients undergo testing and receive appropriate treatment. This is even more challenging today due to the COVID-19 pandemic as so many patients must stay at home and access to in-lab testing is limited,” said Gilad Glick, President and Chief Executive Officer of Itamar Medical. “This agreement demonstrates our commitment in working with leaders across the sleep apnea ecosystem to add home care options for sleep apnea management and addressing the global sleep apnea epidemic.”
It’s estimated that 60 million people in the United States have undiagnosed sleep apnea and, today, the standard care pathway includes multiple in-person visits to the limited number of sleep practices and Durable Medical Equipment offices resulting in almost 80% of those patients remaining undiagnosed. The integration of Itamar Medical’s digital home-based diagnostic platform with BetterNight’s ability to perform remote therapy set up and optimization is expected to enable sleep care management. This is accomplished by significantly improving the rate of conversion from diagnosis-to-treatment, achieving high long-term adherence rate while keeping patients at home satisfied, with only two weeks from referral to sleep apnea treatment.
“BetterNight is a leader in providing comprehensive sleep solutions that have the potential to make a positive impact on the millions of people living with sleep disorders. Adding WatchPAT’s innovative technology, as well as the Itamar Digital Health platform, will be a key component of our sleep apnea solution,” said Dave French, Chief Executive Officer of Sleep Data.
Dr. Dominic Munafo, Chief Medical Officer of BetterNight, said, “Sleep is vitally important to a patient’s health, restoring their immune system, lessening the impact of chronic disease and improving their ability to fight infection. It is crucial to pioneer safe and innovative ways to address the sleep health needs of patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. WatchPAT ONE allows patients to access highly accurate and data-rich sleep apnea testing from the comfort of their homes, eliminating the barriers associated with overnight testing at a sleep clinic and reducing infection risk. Our sleep specialist staff uses multiple WatchPAT signals to provide rapid and accurate diagnoses, allowing those patients who need CPAP therapy to receive their CPAP devices and coaching in a timely manner. We are excited to collaborate with Itamar Medical in bridging the gap between a cardiologist’s sleep study referral and effective therapy.”
Source: Company Press Release