Chronic diseases represent an overwhelming burden for healthcare systems in developed countries, thanks to increasingly elderly populations, and a clear need exists for Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) to help lift the load off stretched healthcare resources, states new analysis by GBI Research.
According to the new report – Remote Patient Monitoring Market to 2019 – Potential to Reduce Healthcare Cost Burden and Improve Quality of Care to Drive Future Growth – by 2030, the U.S. is projected to see diabetes prevalence rise to 29.6%, and the cost of heart disease treatment triple. These chronic health problems will provide a significant need for RPM devices in the future, and the availability of reimbursement will continue to drive future growth. The US RPM market was valued at US$104.5m in 2012, and is forecast to reach US$296.5m by 2019 at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 16%.
Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is projected to cause the annual deaths of 25 million people globally by 2030, and patients can often deteriorate rapidly after the onset of symptoms. A preventative approach to CVD treatment could see implantable RPMs used in at-risk patients, alerting medical centers to early warning signs of cardiac arrest.
Diabetes is another common chronic condition, with a global disease population projected to hit 552 million by 2030. Diabetes caused 4.6 million deaths and more than US$450 billion in healthcare costs in 2011 alone, and significant opportunities are available for the RPM market, if suitable monitoring can be conducted.
RPM can achieve significant cost savings for state healthcare systems. One Biotronik trial on the remote follow-up of patients receiving implantable cardioverter defibrillators for prophylactic therapy showed estimated savings per patient per year of US$915.50, and savings of US$141.40 per person per year on transportation costs.
RPM can also reduce the number of clinic visits and hospitalizations, and the duration of hospital stay, which benefits chronically ill elderly patients for whom traveling long distances may be a concern. This also reduces the burden on the healthcare workforce: the US alone is expected to face a shortage of over 120,000 healthcare professionals by 2025.
However, financial issues arise, problematizing RPM use. Hospitals also only benefit from remote monitoring if the technology reduces the length of stay, with a reduction in the number of hospitalizations generally resulting in a cut to budgets or reimbursement. Expenses are also incurred on educating patients and healthcare practitioners on how to use RPM devices, and having staff available to respond to clinician alerts.
The global Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) market was valued at US$222.8m in 2012 and is forecast to reach US$620.3m by 2019 at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 16%.