Philips shakes up respiratory business

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Friday, July 13, 2018

MURRYSVILLE, Pa. – Philips Sleep and Respiratory Care has overhauled its website www.COPDinfo.com to allow insurance customers to find local HME providers and cash customers to buy directly from the manufacturer.

The website now features a locator tool that prompts insurance customers to enter their zip code for a list of authorized providers that carry the SimplyGo and SimplyGo Mini portable oxygen concentrators.

“We’re facing a new type of consumer who is increasingly seeking information and solutions online, and often from manufacturers,” said Eli Diacopoulos, global respiratory care leader at Philips. “This increases awareness and access to Philips products, and makes it easier to find a local DME and for select customers not served by a DME to make purchases.”

www.COPDinfo.com previously focused solely on providing education and resources about the respiratory condition and the products used to treat it.

The website also features an “add to cart” option for cash customers who don’t want to or can’t bill their insurance. This option is available for not only the SimplyGo POCs but also the InnoSpire nebulizers.

“It’s important to note that the pricing on the website is set to a premium, to our MAP pricing that exists today,” Diacopoulos said. “This is not to compete with DMEs.”

For purchases made through the website, Diacopoulos says Philips has a “robust” program in place for servicing customers remotely.

“There is a package of information, there are videos, and there is certainly a direct communication with the customer,” he said. “We are accessible to them through a direct phone line for service support.”

Philips made the changes to the website, Diacopoulos says, in large part due to successful efforts by another POC manufacturer in marketing directly to consumers.

“We want to compete for that brand awareness and we want customers to choose Philips,” he said.  

But Philips still prefers that customers buy through HME providers, Diacopoulos says.

“We’re in this to create awareness and to be the preferred brand,” he said, “and to help align our DMEs to thrive.”

In addition to a revamped www.COPDinfo.com, Philips also plans to make the InCourage System from RespirTech, which it acquired last year, available to select HME providers in July and to expand services around its CoughAssist.