2012: US remote patient monitoring $10.6B market

By Jonah Comstock
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Philips eICU system

Philips eICU system

Kalorama Information released a report this year on remote patient monitoring, stating that the US market increased from $8.9 billion in 2011 to $10.6 billion in 2012, an increase of 19 percent. Kalorama's numbers looked at what the New York-based research firm calls "advanced remote patient monitoring", which it defines as technologies that have wireless or remote capabilities and can potentially interact directly with an EHR.

"Patient monitoring systems with advanced features, especially wireless or remote capability, are among the fastest-growing medical devices," the report's abstract reads. "The aging population and the associated increases in diseases such as congestive heart disease and diabetes as well as the cost of treating those conditions, is driving sales of these devices. Use of new patient monitoring technologies can result in a need for fewer personnel, increased coverage by existing personnel, and a reduction in errors and are expected to lead to better patient care and the recognition of serious health problems before they become an issue."

That 19 percent growth tracks with a prediction Kalorama made last July, when it asserted the market would grow by 18 percent annually. That rate would put the US market at $20.9 billion by 2016, the previous report said. That same report indicated there had been a 23 percent annual growth rate between 2007 (when the market was worth $3.9 billion) and 2011's $8.9 billion.

At the start of 2011, Kalorama predicted that remote monitoring technology would hit $6 billion that year -- a prediction that appears to have been surpassed. Back then, the firm was more ambitiously predicting a 26 percent annual growth rate.

If these numbers seem high compared to, for instance, GBI's March 2012 report, which predicted an $8 billion market in 2017, it could be because Kalorama has an unusually wide definition for remote monitoring: the firm includes some in-hospital patient monitoring in its numbers, not merely telehealth.

"This year we tried something different: we segmented the market between two types of information that customers request from us," Publisher Bruce Carlson wrote on Kalorama's blog. "We have a segment on hospital patient monitoring, which is still remote ([patient monitoring] between the rooms or floors or even buildings of a hospital) and telemedicine, where the patient monitoring occurs between patient and provider."

In addition to US data, Kalorama tracks the global markets in its paid reports. In the same blog post, the firm revealed that worldwide market growth from 2011 to 2012 for advanced patient monitoring was 17 percent.