Research from European research from Price Waterhouse Coopers (PwC) shows that patients with sleep apnea who use ResMed’s myAir have greater adherence to CPAP therapy than those who don’t.

MyAir is ResMed’s digital and online support program that enables patients to track their own treatment and get personalized coaching tips to support motivation.

The data, published in a white paper, demonstrate that myAir patients use their device an average 46 minutes longer per night compared to other patients. Furthermore, the average adherence to CPAP treatment for new patients in their first week of treatment is 76% for myAir patients compared to 71% for other patients.1

David Jones, sleep manager at University Hospital of South Manchester, United Kingdom, says in a release: “We know that around half of patients are not compliant with their CPAP treatment; this is a major concern for sleep treatment professionals.2 The effects of poor treatment adherence are profound, not only because of the impact on patients’ quality of life, but also in terms of an increased number of accidents and emergency visits, hospitalizations, and the resulting financial burden that this places on healthcare systems. These latest findings confirm that enabling patients to track and improve their CPAP device usage is an important step towards long-term compliance and better patient outcomes.”

PwC’s study, “Empowering the Sleep Apnoea Patient,” analyzed anonymous daily-usage data from over 23,000 patients in Germany and the United Kingdom on CPAP or APAP therapy for sleep apnea.1 The patients were treated by sleep clinics and home care providers in these 2 countries, and were all monitored via telemonitoring by their nurse or physician. Over 1,800 of these patients were also registered in myAir.

In addition to receiving data, PwC interviewed several clinics and home care providers in the United Kingdom, Germany, and Finland to further investigate the positive influence of myAir on patients and clinics. Usage data and anecdotal evidence were then analyzed for those patients who had and hadn’t registered for myAir.

Christian Käfling from PwC says, “In recent years, the introduction of telemonitoring has given sleep clinics and home care providers a tool to proactively intervene to help patients starting CPAP treatment. With myAir, telemonitoring has been taken to the next level, and this research has now confirmed that patients who use it show significantly and measurably better adherence and usage than other patients.”

Laurent Morin, ResMed’s EMEA senior medical affairs director, says: “The myAir online support program was developed based on principles of behavioral therapy. It has been well documented that patient engagement is key to successful treatment and that involving patients in their treatment improves adherence. myAir’s regular reminders, tailored coaching and positive reinforcement offer a valuable additional level of support to the care already provided by sleep clinics.”

PwC’s study findings in Europe are supported by recent research presented in the United States at CHEST 2016, the annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians. The data showed that patients who use a digital self-monitoring tool when treating their sleep apnea with positive airway pressure (PAP) are significantly more likely to continue using their therapy. The observational study of more than 128,000 US patients, the largest-ever study of sleep apnea and digital connected care, showed that more than 87% of PAP users were compliant on therapy when using ResMed’s myAir and AirView, a clinical remote monitoring tool, compared to 70% compliance for those using AirView alone.3

Obstructive sleep apnea is a major public health problem across Europe, and as with other illnesses, poor adherence to treatment is a significant issue for patients and the healthcare professionals who treat them.3 Sleep apnea involves the recurrent partial or complete collapse of the upper airway during sleep and is usually associated with snoring, oxygen desaturation, and sleep fragmentation. CPAP devices prevent collapse of the upper airway by maintaining continuous positive air pressure throughout inspiration and expiration via a mask during sleep.5

Morin adds, “While this study focused on CPAP users, we believe these results may be applied more broadly in terms of the role that online tools can have in improving medical treatment compliance overall.”