The demand for home healthcare has grown in recent years and it’s predicted to continue. Many conditions can now be managed at home, including those that require long-term oxygen, mixed gas, and ventilation therapies. One reason the demand has grown is because COVID increased the need for these treatments, as patients experienced low blood oxygen levels. Some developed other chronic respiratory issues requiring regular treatment.
In respiratory therapies, including the treatment of COVID, medical grade oxygen can be used to restore tissues and prevent possible lung damage. Another option (composed of between 70 and 80 percent helium and the remaining 20 to 30 percent oxygen), heliox, is a medical-grade specialty gas mixture that alleviates respiratory distress and makes breathing easier. Used for over 50 years in the medical industry, heliox is three times thinner than air. This allows the molecules to diffuse in the lungs four times faster than oxygen. Helium is the perfect gas to mix with oxygen because it does not react with body tissue and is insoluble in body fluids.
Like heliox, lung diffusion mixtures are another type of medical-grade gas used for pulmonary functions, made up of various combinations of the following: oxygen, helium, balance nitrogen, and less than one percent of carbon monoxide, methane, acetylene or neon.
PurityPlus gases contain at least two gases and more complex mixtures contain 30 or more. PurityPlus specialty gas standards ensure there are no contaminates or undesirable characteristics in any of the gases you purchase. Contaminants of unwanted gases or foreign elements can destroy equipment or create poor quality products, especially when it comes to scientific laboratories, hospitals, and home healthcare applications. At PurityPlus certified facilities, such as RMA’s Salt Lake City fill plant, high quality gases are guaranteed. Each cylinder is mixed, tested for levels of impurities and certified to ensure the highest accuracy possible. This process includes various methods of blending and analysis, a referenced standard is used during preparation, and an estimated expiration date is added. Shelf life for specialty gases can be anywhere from 6 months to more than 2 years depending on the specified tolerances for each component in the mixture.
Hospitals typically utilize two types of medical oxygen applications: liquid bulk tanks and high-pressure gas cylinders. For home healthcare applications, cylinders and portable oxygen concentrators are the preferred choices.
Cylinders are sturdy, convenient, and economical for smaller hospital applications or for home healthcare. High pressure gas cylinders are designed to store industrial gases such as nitrogen, helium, hydrogen, oxygen, and carbon dioxide. Liquid cylinders or dewars are also used, depending on the need. Cylinders should be regularly tested for safety, either hydrostatically or ultrasonically. Specialty gas cylinders are rented and refilled at the gas supplier’s location.
Oxygen concentrators are devices that concentrate oxygen by capturing air and removing nitrogen and other gases. Concentrators then supply a gas stream of oxygen from a compact machine the size of a suitcase. Though not supplied by Rocky Mountain Air, they are beneficial for home use, pop-up hospitals, and as backups to cylinders. Concentrators are portable and play an important role in allowing patients to be safely transported if necessary.
Rocky Mountain Air is a resource for safety and compliance products for field service technicians, respiratory therapists, and delivery vehicles engaged in compressed cryogenic oxygen services. We have an unwavering commitment to supplying the health and home care industry with the right products, right on time. We supply oxygen at a variety of purity levels for a variety of systems and partner with PurityPlus for high purity specialty gas certification and testing. Medical grade oxygen and mixed gases are guaranteed to meet FDA standards.
Contact your local RMA branch in any one of our five states today to discuss your medical gas needs with a representative or one of our cryogenic experts. We look forward to partnering with you and providing flawless dependability!