Healthcare Knowledge Center wants temporary payment for remote heart monitoring – Health

The Federal Healthcare Knowledge Center (KCE) suggests starting with a temporary reimbursement for remote cardiac monitoring. In this way, the uncertainties surrounding the use of this technology can first be clarified. KCE reports this on Tuesday.

About 15,000 patients in Belgium each year receive a heart transplant such as a pacemaker or defibrillator. Some are monitored remotely, but this service is currently non-refundable. The KCE was asked to evaluate the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of this remote monitoring and to consider the extent to which it would be desirable to reimburse the services of the providers concerned. According to KCE, some of these patients benefit from remote monitoring of their devices, which theoretically allows them to visit the hospital at a lower rate.

At the moment, patients with a defibrillator are under remote monitoring (more than half), but there are no exact figures on their number. Reason: Since this service is non-refundable, there is no record of medical benefits associated with it (other than the implant itself, which is of course covered by health insurance). With telemedicine on the rise today and the National Institute of Human Development and Development working on reforming the nomenclature of medical benefits, now is the time to ask about reimbursement for this telemonitoring.

After analyzing all available information, KCE concluded that because remote monitoring is just as safe and effective as traditional monitoring, the performance of healthcare providers should be compensated for remote monitoring. However, since no significant added value of remote monitoring has been shown compared to conventional monitoring in terms of quality of life, mortality rate or number of hospital admissions, this should not result in additional expenditure for RIZIV/INAMI. Given the many uncertainties in the current data, KCE suggests starting with a temporary reimbursement. “This will allow us to gain more insight into the real situation before making a final decision on compensation for these services,” KCE asserts.

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About 15,000 patients in Belgium each year receive a heart transplant such as a pacemaker or defibrillator. Some are monitored remotely, but this service is currently non-refundable. The KCE was asked to evaluate the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of this remote monitoring and to consider the extent to which it would be desirable to reimburse the services of the providers concerned. According to KCE, some of these patients benefit from remote monitoring of their devices, which theoretically allows them to visit the hospital at a lower rate. At the moment, patients with a defibrillator are under remote monitoring (more than half), but there are no exact figures on their number. Reason: Since this service is non-refundable, there is no record of medical benefits associated with it (other than the implant itself for the device, which is of course covered by health insurance). With telemedicine on the rise right now and the National Institute for Human Development and Human Development (NIHD) working to reform the nomenclature of medical benefits, now is the time to ask about reimbursement for this telemonitoring. After analyzing all available information, KCE concluded that because remote monitoring is just as safe and effective as traditional monitoring, the performance of healthcare providers should be compensated for remote monitoring. However, since no significant added value of remote monitoring has been shown compared to conventional monitoring in terms of quality of life, mortality rate or number of hospital admissions, this should not result in additional expenditure for RIZIV/INAMI. Given the many uncertainties in the current data, KCE suggests starting with a temporary reimbursement. “This will allow us to gain more insight into the real situation before making a final decision on compensation for these services,” KCE asserts.

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Megan Vasquez

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