Functional Outcome Measures Aid Third Party Payment

Diane Atkins, OTR/L, FISPO
Hema Patel and Molly Hill

CHICAGO — Using a variety of functional outcome measures may serve as an aid in securing third party payment, according to a poster presentation at The American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists Annual Meeting and Scientific Symposium.

Hema Patel, BSBA, and Molly Hill, BSME, students in the Master of Science in Prosthetics & Orthotics program at the Georgia Institute of Technology, are using these measures to determine factors that predict which suspension systems best fit patients, based on their activity levels, body composition and subjective feedback, Hill said.

Patel and Hill collect data from the patients as they switch suspension systems every 2 weeks, from their own suspension — locking pin systems — to suction systems and then vacuum systems.

These results are measured through a variety of functional outcome measures, including the Prosthesis Evaluation Questionnaire, the Trinity Amputation and Prosthesis Experience Scales, and the Modified Emory Functional Ambulation Profile, a timed profile that measures walking on different surfaces. These tests are becoming a trend for measuring and quantifying study results, Hema Patel, BSBA, said.

“We’re trying to get on the map the functional outcome measures for not only quantifying results, but also to be able to use that inputable application so that we can get insurance companies to start seeing how maybe one type of suspension, or maybe a device in general, is better than another,” Patel told O&P Business News.

Hill and Patel have not completed the study protocol, but said they hope the information from this pilot study will fuel a larger study in the future.

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