Cigna Expands Brainsway Brain Stimulator Device Coverage for the Treatment of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) has been ranked until World Health Organization as one of the top 10 most disabling diseases in terms of loss of income and reduced quality of life. The condition is complex and presents differently in each patient, many of whom are drug resistant. These challenges complicate the treatment of OCD. Many patients suffering from this condition do not respond well to traditional treatment options such as cognitive-behavioral therapy and medication.

Brainswayan Israeli company that offers non-invasive neurostimulation treatments for mental disorders is working to solve this problem through its in-depth solution Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) Device. On Thursday, Zigna announced that it is so revise its TMS medical coverage policy to extend coverage for Brainsway’s deep TMS device to patients 18 and older diagnosed with OCD.

With its policy change, Cigna now joins several other major insurers covering the device, including centene, Climax, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Tricare and Palmetto GBA. More than 86 million adults can now access BrainsWay’s deep TMS treatment for OCD, said CEO Christopher von Jako.

TMS is a non-invasive treatment that activates brain structures through directional electromagnetic fields that produce excitation of neurons. Brainsway specializes in deep TMS treatment, an evolution of traditional TMS. Deep TMS uses flexible H-coils embedded in a patient- and operator-friendly helmet. These non-invasively activate targeted brain structures that can treat a range of mental illnesses.

The H-Coil design in Brainway’s device allows for deeper and wider stimulation than traditional TMS coils, according to von Jako. This results in greater neuron activation and a reduced likelihood of aiming errors.

There are companies that offer traditional TMS solutions – such as neuronetics and MagVenturewho have also approved devices to treat OCD in the United States. But von Jako claims that Brainsway is the only company that offers Deep TMS.

Patients using Brainway’s Deep TMS device to treat OCD use it between 3 and 20 minutes daily. They use it for at least four weeks, with the option to integrate it into their daily routine later, says von Jako. Since its launch in 2019, the response rate for Brainsway’s device in real-world clinical practice settings is nearly 60%, with an average lifespan of about 2 years, he shared.

Under Cigna’s updated coverage policy, an initial deep TMS treatment session is considered medically necessary if the patient meets the following two criteria: two or more failed medication trials and one trial of evidence-based psychotherapy with no significant improvement in symptoms. This treatment regimen includes 30-36 sessions.

The policy also requires that patients who experience a 30% or greater improvement in their scores on the Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale — the most common OCD rating scale — that are maintained for at least two months are candidates for additional treatment with 30-36 more sessions.

Cigna is one of the largest health plans in the US — it offers commercial health insurance to about 17 million members in 13 states and has Medicare Advantage plans in 16 states. Cigna also participates in the Health Insurance Marketplace online exchange. Acquiring a positive coverage policy is a big step for Brainsway, said von Jako.

“If I had spoken to you about a year ago, I would have told you that we don’t have coverage for deep TMS treatment for OCD patients,” he said. “With Cigna’s positive coverage policy, we have increased coverage to over 85 million lives across the United States. We still have work to do and plan to continue paving the way to even more positive coverage to improve patient access for this life. saving treatment.”

Photo: SIphotography, Getty Images

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