Oxygen360 is our "moon shot" project to modernize every aspect of oxygen therapy. Our primary goal is to identify and promote innovative modern technologies to improve the quality of life of every oxygen therapy user. We work with manufacturers, durable medical equipment suppliers/distributors, and other stakeholders to develop practical and sustainable solutions that work for everyone.
Watch the video to learn more about Oxygen360
Oxygen Therapy: The Problem
Supplemental oxygen is a mainstay of therapy for COPD and many other chronic respiratory conditions (including pulmonary fibrosis, bronchiectasis, and interstitial lung diseases). In fact, oxygen therapy is one of the small numbers of treatments clinically shown to lengthen lifespans for people with these conditions.1,2
Unfortunately, the oxygen landscape is truly a land of confusion. Misunderstandings, inefficiencies, and unrealized potential are the orders of the day. Equipment is bulky, loud, and cumbersome, and it does not adapt to changing oxygenation needs. Interfaces, like nasal cannulas, can be unpleasant to use and lead to problems like skin breakdown. Supply chain disruptions have led to waiting lists and delayed discharges. These issues have made oxygen therapy challenging to use for those who need it the most.
Things are not much better on the clinical/administrative side. Many clinicians lack the information needed to properly diagnose hypoxemia (low oxygen levels in the blood) or prescribe oxygen therapy. This leads to therapy plans that do not work as well as possible. Complicated billing and reimbursement policies have made it difficult for durable medical equipment (DME) companies to survive and provide high-quality services for their communities. These barriers prevent people from accessing the right therapies for their needs and lifestyles.
These barriers have placed oxygen users at risk in some surprising ways. For example, sales of non-FDA-approved oxygen concentrators have exploded in recent years due to increased demand created by COVID-19. These "noncentrators" have not undergone rigorous testing. True oxygen concentrators need to become certified and deliver oxygen at levels barely higher than the standard atmosphere (compared with the almost pure oxygen of true concentrators). This creates a dangerous situation for people depending on this equipment to breathe. In 2021, the COPD Foundation issued a position statement against these devices and began a petition drive to have them removed from the marketplace. In 2022, we will be conducting research to objectively show how dangerous these devices are and challenge federal agencies to ban them from sales in the United States.
Watch the video to learn more about oxygen "noncentrators."
Oxygen360: Our Strategy:
We believe oxygen therapy is due for a complete overhaul. Consistent with the COPD Foundation's 360-degree strategy, we seek to:
- ENGAGE stakeholders through regular conversations between industry, oxygen users, clinicians, and others in the oxygen community,
- EDUCATE oxygen users and clinicians through events like our monthly OxyTalk virtual support groups, printed educational materials, and other resources, and
- EMPOWER innovation in oxygen delivery devices, supply chain infrastructure, and health care policy.
Ultimately, we aim to create solutions that work for all stakeholders in the oxygen community and do so in a practical, sustainable, and equitable way. Some have called that an impossible task, but we believe things are only impossible until they are not!
The Oxygen360 Team
If you want to get involved with Oxygen360, please contact the COPD Foundation at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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- Kvale PA, Conway WA, Coates EO. Continuous or nocturnal oxygen therapy in hypoxemic chronic obstructive lung disease. A clinical trial. Ann Intern Med. 1980;93(3):391-398. https://doi.org/10.7326/0003-4819-93-3-391
- Leggett RJ, Cooke NJ, Clancy L, Leitch AG, Kirby BJ, Flenley DC. Long-term domiciliary oxygen therapy in cor pulmonale complicating chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Thorax. 1976;31(4):414-418. https://doi.org/10.1136/thx.31.4.414