What is a pulse oximeter and how does it help you?


As we continue to learn more about COVID-19 and its affect on the human body, there are some recurring terms that keep popping up. Pulse oximetry continues to be tossed around, but using it is nothing new to the medical field. Pulse oximetry is the measure of the saturation of oxygen in your blood. The term associated with pulse oximetry is SpO2.


The SmartO2 is SuperScribe’s pulse oximeter, or device to measure SpO2 for you. Traditionally, pulse oximeters are worn on the fingertip where they will either perform a spot check (once) or continuously monitor your blood oxygen level. The continuous monitoring style can be cumbersome and is generally done in the hospital where it is part of a machine that takes other body measurements such as blood pressure, heart rate, ECG, etc. The SmartO2 is innovative due to its ring style that brings continuous monitoring home without all the wires and machines. It’s also noninvasive, which means that nothing goes inside of your body. Pulse oximeters operate by using an infrared light from one side and goes through your finger to another sensor directly opposite of the light emitting sensor. This is completely safe and won’t cause any harm to you. By utilizing Bluetooth technology, the SmartO2 is able to safely and directly connect to your phone or tablet. And results can be emailed to your provider, or uploaded into your EHR via Apple Health, your data remains HIPAA compliant.

The SmartO2 is a ring style, so it can be comfortably worn during the day or overnight. This allows you to monitor your blood oxygen levels over a period of time, which is important because blood oxygen saturation can give you variable readings depending on when, what you’re doing, etc. The SmartO2 has a heart rate monitor and motion monitor, so you can see more of your vitals, especially during resting periods or during sleep. Sleep apnea patients can take advantage of this to see if they are getting enough oxygen while they sleep.

So how else does it help providers? There a few specialities that benefit from understanding pulse oximetry and having that data on hand. Nephrology, pulmonology, cardiology, and oncology can greatly benefit from knowing the SpO2 of their patients. Pertaining to COVID-19, pulse oximetry measurements is invaluable to monitoring patients outside of the hospital. Breathlessness and shortness of breath are common with COVID-19, but hypoxia is also a major concern because a patient could have low blood oxygen levels without feeling the symptoms of shortness of breath. With hospitals reaching maximum bed capacity, letting patients keep track of their health at home saves bed space for non-COVID patients, reduces PPE costs, and lessens travel time/expenses.

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SuperScribe expands into Remote Patient Monitoring

SuperScribe, LLC has expanded its healthcare services to include Remote Patient Monitoring! To help address a number of issues that hospitals and providers are facing from the COVID-19 pandemic, SuperScribe’s new RPM program provides a great solution.

It’s no secret that patients have been reducing visits to their PCP’s, coming to the Emergency Room less often, and canceling appointments due to reasons including finances, health-related causes, or time. COVID-19 has made people stay at home and caused clinics to close their doors to the public and taking in only virtual patients. By using our RPM devices, patients can monitor their own vitals at their convenience at any location.

Key advantages for patients to use telemedicine and remote patient monitoring include:

  • Increased health and safety as you can stay in your own home
  • Reduce travel expenses, including drive time, fuel, and parking fees
  • Flexible time to schedule appointments
  • Securely send your health information. By emailing only your results, there’s no worry about sharing payment information, social security numbers, or any other highly confidential information.
  • Feel connected to your health provider as you are always in communication
  • Have a better sense of knowing whether an in-person visit is necessary

Key advantages for hospitals, clinics, and providers include:

  • Continue care for your patients outside of the facility
  • Monitor your patient’s health and let them know if an in-person visit should be required
  • Allow you to care for patients that have logistics issues. For example, patients in rural areas travel much further and spend more on fuel and time.
  • Allow you to care for older patients safely in the winter months
  • Medicare/MA reimbursement opportunities for using remote patient monitoring services
  • Continued care program management for patients outside of the office
  • Chronic Care Management eligible
  • Reduce hospital readmissions and emergency room visits
  • Reduce costs associated with having patients inside of your office. For example, PPE costs, cleaning supplies, cleaning staff fees

Contact Us today to find out more about our remote patient monitoring devices and how they can help providers and patients!