Home Oxygen Services Subpar for Patients With Lung Disease

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Equipment issues such as running out of oxygen and immobility are the top concerns among patients using home oxygen services.
Equipment issues such as running out of oxygen and immobility are the top concerns among patients using home oxygen services.

A new survey shows that patients with lung disease are unable to acquire home oxygen equipment that meets their needs.1 The research was presented at the American Thoracic Society (ATS) International Conference, held May 19-24 in Washington DC.

Kathleen O. Lindell, RN, PhD, from the ATS Nursing Assembly Oxygen Working Group, and colleagues conducted a 60-item online survey to provide insight into patient concerns of barriers in achieving home oxygen services.

The majority of 1926 participants were older women who used oxygen 24 hours per day for 15 years.

The survey, posted on websites of patient and professional organizations in the United States that had a lung disease focus, asked 2 questions:

  1. What is the biggest problem that you would say you have with your oxygen? 
  2. Is there some issue, other than those mentioned above, that you are having related to your oxygen?

Participants submitted answers in a free text response that were then transcribed, and researchers then used content analysis to identify common themes.

The first question received 128 responses and the second question received 745 responses, with common themes of equipment issues such as lack of portability and reduced availability of liquid oxygen, access issues including insurance coverage, and concern of impaired quality of life.

"Our survey found that fewer than 10 percent of patients received education about their oxygen from their clinician, and the majority received education about their oxygen equipment from the delivery person," said Dr Lindell in a press release.2 "As patients' oxygen needs may change over the course of their lung disease, it's vital that frequent review of oxygen equipment and testing be incorporated into clinical practice," she concluded.

References

  1. Lindell KO, Catazanarite L, Collins EG, et al. Equipment access and worry about running short of oxygen: key concerns in the patient supplemental oxygen survey. Presented at the 2017 American Thoracic Society (ATS) International Conference; Washington DC; May 19-24. Abstract 12608.
  2. Patients with lung disease say current home oxygen delivery systems do not meet their needs, increase their isolation. New York, NY: American Thoracic Society. http://www.thoracic.org/about/newsroom/press-releases/conference/2017/lindell-oxygen-delivery-systems.php Published May 22, 2017. Accessed May 22, 2017.