Comparison of Ninety-day Wound Related Costs for Patients Undergoing Outpatient NPWT With or Without Remote Therapy Monitoring

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In the outpatient setting, negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT*) combined with remote therapy monitoring (RTM) can be used to collect and transmit therapy usage information. In this RTM program, patients are assigned a virtual therapy specialist (VTS), who answers patient questions and provides timely intervention in response to nonadherence. Studies have shown that successful contact with a VTS is followed by increased NPWT adherence,1 which is correlated with a higher rate of reduction in wound size.2 Most recently, a pilot study of 431 patients found that those receiving outpatient NPWT with RTM required fewer therapy days than patients receiving NPWT alone, possibly reducing costs of care.3 The objective of this evaluation was to determine whether RTM reduced 90-day costs in patients undergoing NPWT. Patients receiving NPWT in the outpatient setting between March 2018 and May 2019 were included. Costs, patient demographics, and wound characteristics were collected from payor claims data. Of the 1,105 patients included the study, 675 (61%) received RTM and 430 (39%) did not. RTM patients were significantly older, had more chronic wounds, and had higher Charlson Co-morbidity Index (CCI) scores. The unadjusted mean 90-day wound related costs trended higher for non-RTM patients than RTM patients (p=0.0799). However, after multiple regression analysis to adjust for differences in age, payor type, CCI, and wound type, there was a significant reduction in 90-day wound related costs in the RTM group compared to the non-RTM group ($11,119 versus $14,752; p=0.0131). The RTM group had higher NPWT costs ($3,757 versus $3,289; p=0.0035), but lower wound-related non-NPWT costs ($7,361 versus $11,462; p=0.0045). Non-wound related costs remained the same in both groups (p=0.9393). In conclusion, this study demonstrates the value of RTM in supporting NPWT adherence and mitigating the costs of wound care.

*ACTIV.A.C.™ Therapy, iOn PROGRESS™ Remote Therapy Monitoring; 3M, San Antonio, TX

1. Griffin L, Casillas LL. Evaluating the Impact of a Patient-centered Remote Monitoring Program on Adherence to Negative Pressure Wound Therapy. Wounds. 2018;30(3):E29-E31.
2. Griffin L, Leyva Casillas LM. A Patient-centered Remote Therapy Monitoring Program Focusing on Increased Adherence to Wound Therapy: A Large Cohort Study. Wounds. 2018;30(8):E81-E83.
3. Griffin L, Sifuentes MM. Retrospective Payor Claims Analysis of Patients Receiving Outpatient Negative Pressure Wound Therapy With Remote Therapy Monitoring. Wounds. 2019;31(2):E9-E11.

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