Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Proof of RPM Benefit Emerges

The proof of the pudding is in the eating, or so the saying goes.   For insurance companies and governments, they will reimburse if the product can show effectiveness.  As detailed in our report on Advanced Remote Patient Monitoring (   These developments will drive implementation of new systems. 

 Numerous studies in the United States and Europe have proven the cost benefits of remote patient monitoring (RPM), despite initial costs to implement.  The Home-Care Management Systems study was partially sponsored by the European Commission under the Trans-European Network initiative.  The study, known as TEN-HMS, was the world’s first large-scale, randomized prospective telemonitoring trial.  The study showed that the use of home-based telemonitoring reduced the number of hospital days by 26% and led to an overall cost savings of 10% compared with nurse telephone support.  Home telemonitoring also increased both patient survival and patient satisfaction. 

Due to the initial expense of telehomecare, Telemedicine, and telemonitoring, several groups have conducted, or are conducting, studies of the effectiveness and benefits.  Constant monitoring and use of alarms that warn of results outside normal parameters for a patient’s condition often allows a patient and his or her provider to immediately react to a health problem before it becomes serious enough to require emergency room service or hospital admission. Authors of a 2010 remote patient monitoring study assessing costs from heart failure reported that cost savings favored remote patient monitoring. Costs saved per patient fell in the range of $400 to $1,300.

 Another study[1] concerning asthma patient self-monitoring using smartphones indicated that there was no cost saving or improvement of care for this group. This suggests that there are some instances where remote monitoring has a significant advantage and some situations where there are none. The advantages in remote monitoring are stronger in more involved care such as with heart failure patients, or diabetes.  

In the United States, a study by Noel et al. (2004) showed that the use of telemedicine added $1,666 to costs during a six-month study.  However, overall health care costs decreased by 58% for the group of patients receiving telehomecare.  According to a Wall Street Journal report, annual savings from remote monitoring could amount to as much as $10.1 billion for U.S residents with congestive heart
 failure; $6.1 billion for patients with diabetes; and $4.9 billion for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.


Monday, July 22, 2013

Cancer Testing Opportunity in Developing Nations

As cancer diagnostics prove to be the key to early detection and improved cancer outcomes, developing nations will be an increasingly important market for these products, says Kalorama Information.  The healthcare market research publisher said that 80% of the market for cancer testing products is now in developed nations, but there is opportunity in the remaining market.  The healthcare market research publisher says western nations have the highest incidence, but also the highest survival rates from cancer, partially due to stringent testing programs.  The lowest recorded incidences of cancer are in the developing countries but they also suffered higher rates of death by cancer.  This according to Kalorama Information’s market research study The World Market for Cancer Diagnostics, 5th Edition, should provide a market opportunity for IVD manufacturers.   

There is a funding gap which has caused the market disparity, according to the report.  Kalorama says that 28 million (80%) of the people who die live in low- and middle-income countries, yet less than 1% of private and public funding for health is allocated to preventing and controlling cancer in these areas.  A burgeoning middle class in Latin America, India, Asia Pacific and the Middle East account for 14% of the market, with the rest of the world accounting for the remaining 3%.  Cancer is a major problem in developing countries - approximately 5.4 million people are diagnosed with cancer each year. 

Part of the problem, the report said, is health funding priorities. 

“These nations are in a continuous fight against HIV, infectious and waterborne diseases that eat away at their healthcare budgets,” said Shara Rosen, Kalorama analyst and the author of the report.  “Little has been left to treat diagnose and treat cancer.” 

But as these nations develop, cancer treatment and testing should be top priorities, while developed nations try to find ways to reduce spending.  In Europe, the aging of the population coupled with the largely unhealthy lifestyle of the Europeans is likely to double the current number of cancer-related cases by 2020. However most of Europe is under extreme financial distress and crumbling healthcare systems are finding hard to cover basic cancer diagnostics.   Japan's commitment to cradle to grave health care coverage would normally result in a robust market.  However, Japan has looked to prevention programs to offset the cost of treatment.  Here too, the market for cancer tests is not expected to grow faster than the market itself. Further, test rationalization and healthcare reorganization is in progress, worldwide, it is not anticipated that cancer testing in any geographic segment will grow faster than the market itself for the next few years – 9%.  The report says the U.S. remains the world driver of cancer test innovation and is the major market for cancer tests and test services, yet even there payers are beginning to rationalize the use of some high-priced tests.  The U.S. with only 5% of new cancer patients in the world per year, accounts for 49% of the market for cancer diagnostics and remains the greatest opportunity. 

“Growth in developing markets such as Latin America, non-Japan Asia and the Middle East should be near ten percent per year from 2012 to 2017,” Rosen said.

The report says for example, cancer is the leading death cause in urban China and the second one in rural China. Lung cancer is the most common cancer, followed by stomach cancer, liver cancer, esophageal cancer and colorectal cancer. Cancer Control Programs in China focus on prevention, early diagnosis and treatment. In June 2009, China Ministry of Health launched six major public health programs including giving booster shots of the hepatitis B vaccine to those under the age of 15 as the supplementation to the immunization of infants against hepatitis B and providing a free screening program for breast and cervix cancers among the rural women in 200 counties.  In Brazil, screening programs for HPV has been implemented.  These are just some of the efforts launched in what have been called ‘rest of world’ regions in the past. 

The report, The World Market for Cancer Diagnostics, has market estimates and forecasts for every major segment of cancer diagnostics.  The report profiles key companies in the industry and talks about future product developments and industry trends.  The report, the fifth of Kalorama’s studies on the cancer testing market in the past decade, can be found at