About VS Diagnostics
Vital System Assessment Tests
The VSD Testing Series helps to quantify a patient's risk for the two most common causes of death in the United States, heart attack and stroke. The tests measure independent predictors of cardiovascular risk, allowing for better risk stratification and targeted preventative treatments as well as providing an objective method to track and monitor the progression or improvement of disease. The better risk stratification resulting from these tests allows for earlier and more effective interventions leading to better outcomes for patients and long-term cost savings for insurance organizations.
Patients with common cardiovascular risk factors such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, neurological pain and or a history of smoking may be qualified for VSD testing pursuant to medical necessity reimbursement guidelines. Test results indicate the efficacy of current treatment, whether referral to a specialist is recommended, or even if urgent steps must be undertaken to preserve life and quality of life. Such objective risk quantification can help mitigate risk for the practice.
Unlike traditional equipment purchases, which require a great deal of practitioner and staff effort to implement and never seem to work as advertised, VS Diagnostics provides a comprehensive program that includes training and ongoing support services to ensure success.
The VS Diagnostics testing program includes complete in-person staff training, comprehensive billing training and ongoing troubleshooting, customized patient qualification criteria and documentation, full access to our medical and clinical directors for clinical advice, office process guidance and updated medical research, as well as regular coaching and communication meetings with one of our experienced professionals.
With the VSD program, patients are qualified for testing based on CMS and LCD medical qualification guidelines. The 20 to 25-minute testing series is entirely performed by office staff, freeing practitioners to attend to other responsibilities.
The testing series is comprised of the following tests:
Heart Rate Variability, Pulse Wave Velocity and Sudomotor Function
Heart Rate Variability (HRV)
Measures the minute changes in time between heartbeats, is an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease and the only known predictor for sudden cardiac death, as first discovered by the Framingham Study.
Pulse Wave Velocity (PWV)
Measures the speed at which the heartbeat's wave of pressure passes through the arteries is the gold-standard non-invasive test of arterial elasticity. PWV is also an independent risk factor for adverse cardiovascular events.
The test for sudomotor function, or the "movement of sweat", is the Sympathetic Skin Response, or SSR. It is a simple, non-invasive test that assesses the skin's sympathetic activity by measuring the change in electrical potential of the skin due to a small amount of sweat production.
The sympathetic nervous system mediates appropriate sweat production, and this system is often malfunctioning in distal neuropathies, such as those frequently seen in diabetes, as well as in centrally mediated neuropathies of many kinds.
Patients are qualified, based on medical necessity guidelines, for each test individually. Many adult patients have existing risk factors, lifestyle choices or personal and family history to be eligible for all three of these tests, given overlapping risk factors and diagnoses.
The combined test results are evaluated using a historical database of approximately 200,000 de-identified prior test results. This comparative analysis offers additional insight into related conditions and possibly other findings such as connected complications of cardiovascular and nervous system dysfunction. Statistically speaking, for every 100-150 tests done, one life-saving intervention will result.
An entry-level staff person without prior experience can be trained to administer the tests with VS Diagnostics' comprehensive in-person training. VSD educators will travel to your location and determine how best the testing may be integrated into to your existing office flow. The combined tests together require between 20-25 minutes to complete.
While the tests are helping save patient lives and quality of life, insurance providers are saving the significant costs of emergency medical treatment as well as those related to hospital, rehabilitation or long-term care.
Patients who qualify may be re-tested yearly and/or when significant changes are made in their medical treatment plans or when changes occur in their health status, such as gaining or losing significant weight, quitting smoking, being diagnosed with diabetes, etc.
Included in the program cost is the equipment, and training (onsite and remote), ongoing technical support, comprehensive billing training plus 90 days of expert billing consultation, as well as customized versions of all required patient documentation, forms and insurance paperwork templates in accordance with local coverage determination guidelines.
The program also includes physicians' interpretation of results, along with considerations for care options, referrals, and potential next steps. A patient-focused printout is also created and includes layperson's explanations of test results as well as suggestions for healthy lifestyle modifications and other strategies that could improve patients' scores.
Having these repeatable tests, which may be done at least annually, helps patients and physicians track and monitor risk factors and disease progression.