Asthma-related ER visits decline by more than half for patients using digitally connected inhalers

Dignity Health and Propeller Health recently released the results of a newly published, peer-reviewed study that shows asthma-related emergency room visits declined by more than 50 percent for people who used connected, digital medicine to manage their disease.

The study, published in World Allergy Organization Journal, is the latest to show how digital medicines can be integrated into routine medical practice. It found that for Dignity Health patients using Propeller’s wireless inhalers to manage their asthma, asthma-related ER visits decreased by 54 percent compared to the previous year, and combined asthma-related emergency room visits and hospitalizations decreased by 57 percent compared to the previous year.

Patients were given access to Propeller Health’s digital medicine platform, which provides patients and providers with information on rescue and controller medicine use. By pairing the patients’ inhalers to a mobile app via a small sensor, patients are able to monitor their disease and get insights on symptoms and triggers. This information also goes to the patients’ healthcare providers so they can work together to get better asthma control.

“Propeller’s digitally connected medicine uniquely address the disruptive effect asthma has on patients’ lives,” said Rich Roth, chief strategic innovation officer at Dignity Health. “This is a perfect example of the positive effect a novel technology can have in helping patients manage a chronic condition. When the sensor communicates more data to physicians, and patients have greater insight into their asthma triggers, outcomes improve and everyone wins.”

“Digital medicines are poised to change the way clinicians practice medicine and work collaboratively with patients,” said Propeller Health Senior Vice President of Clinical and Medical Affairs David Stempel, MD. “Armed with objective data on medication use, doctors are much better positioned to help patients manage their disease and keep them out of the hospital when appropriate.”

The study was conducted by Propeller Health in partnership with San Francisco-based Dignity Health, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Children’s Hospital of Colorado, and National Jewish Health in Denver. Over a period of 12 month, the researchers investigated 224 patients with a diagnosis of persistent asthma who were being actively treated for their disease.

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