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Despite numerous advances in medical technology, diagnosis and treatment, heart disease is still the leading cause of death in the United States. Sudden death from cardiac arrhythmias is the most common cause of death from heart disease, and devices such as implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) clearly have been shown to extend life in patients at risk of sudden cardiac death. Unfortunately, confusion amongst physicians who implant or recommend implantation of these devices has led to many patients getting ICDs implanted without meeting Medicare guidelines for such devices. In addition, approximately half of all patients who do qualify for ICD implants and who would benefit from these devices never get such a device implanted.
A study done by the NCDR (National Cardiovascular Data Registry) from 2006 to June of 2009 revealing that out of 111,707 patients who received ICD implants, 22.5% of these procedures did not meet the evidence-based criteria for implantation. The thought that patients were having ICDs implanted when they might not benefit from the device or even worse, not getting a defibrillator when one was needed is unconscionable. This study cut right to the heart (no pun intended) of this industry and how crucial it is that cardiologists fully understand the specific guidelines set out by CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) for these types of procedures. The CMS guidelines are confusing and difficult to follow - even for the most experienced cardiologists. Although the guidelines for ICD implantation were developed by CMS, based on objective clinical data, they are labyrinthine and nearly impossible for even the most caring and ethical physician to follow for all patients.
In response to the astounding percentage of inappropriate and non-compliant ICD, CRT-P, and CRT-D device implantations each year, Think Tank Medical decided that there must be a way to make implantation decisions easier for cardiologists to understand and put into practice. Based on these facts, Think Tank Medical developed and released their CMS ICD App, available for the iPhone & iPad to ensure that 100% of patients screened meet the evidence-based criteria for implantation.
Beyond the fact that this application can ensure that all patients who need an ICD will receive one and all patients who do not qualify for an ICD will not get one, deploying this application to all cardiologists, electrophysiologists, and doctors in emergency rooms would save Medicare over $300 Million dollars a year in unnecessary payments for non-compliant and inappropriate procedures, as well as save hospitals from not being paid for non-compliant procedures.
We would like your input and feedback on our New CMS ICD App. You can go to www.cmsicd.com to get additional information and download the App or it can be download directly from iTunes. Just search "CMS ICD"