Nippon Sanso Holdings aims to contribute to health maintenance and medical care through the provision of products in the medical field. We supply high-quality medical gases and medical equipment for applications ranging from large hospitals to home health care, primarily though our nationwide network of logistics and services bases. We are also developing a wide range of equipment for home healthcare. We develop, sell, and rent home healthcare and respiratory therapy-related equipment, particularly home oxygen therapy (HOT). Through our nationwide network of our distributors, we provide 24-hour equipment installation, return, and maintenance inspection services. By providing products and services that are designed for safety and ease of use in every aspect, we contribute to better quality of life (QOL) for patients.
Contribution to Home Oxygen Therapy
Ultra-compact portable oxygen cylinder
Japan’s coming super-aged society is driving demand for a better system of home healthcare. As such, we are taking steps to enhance our home healthcare services, which center on HOT. HOT is a medical treatment involving the provision of high concentration oxygen using oxygen concentrators, cylinders, and other devices in non-hospital settings Used primarily in the management of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a cause of chronic respiratory insufficiency, HOT is also used in the treatment of a variety of other conditions, including interstitial pneumonia and advanced lung cancer. The use of HOT has expanded significantly since it was first approved for coverage under Japan’s national health insurance (NHI) program in 1985, with an estimated 160,000 patients currently receiving this therapy. In addition to enabling patients to better balance the demands of everyday life with treatment, there is also strong evidence of additional medical benefits, including prolonged survival, improved mobility, and a reduction in the frequency of hospitalization. In addition to systems for use when patients are at home or out, there is a need for systems that can be used in a variety of everyday situations, including at school and work, as well as when traveling. Moreover, because they are operated by patients or family members, HOT systems must be easy to use to ensure safety and peace of mind.
We promote product development with the aim of addressing diverse needs, with an emphasis on user-friendliness. For example, when HOT patients leave the house, they can transport oxygen cylinders easily using a dedicated cart, but this is shunned by more than a few patients for a variety of reasons, including the weight of portable cylinders and the attention they attract. In response to concerns such as these, we upended conventional ideas of oxygen cylinders with an ultra-compact portable model that can be carried with only a shoulder strap, thus leaving both hands free in an entirely inconspicuous fashion. Other feedback included comments that the oxygen cylinders were complex and difficult to use, and that patients wanted them to last longer. In response, we integrated the cylinder valve with a built-in oxygen regulator that allows oxygen to be delivered efficiently when breathed in, thereby making cylinders last longer. In addition, we extended the continuous usage time and reduced the weight of the unit by combining it with a lightweight conserver. With an increasing number of patients now able to choose home healthcare, we will also continue to promote the development of easy-to-use devices that can be used free of worry and to enhance our supply configuration.
Oxygen concentrators create high concentration oxygen by absorbing oxygen from the air. Since they are powered by electricity, a common concern among patients is that oxygen supplies can be lost if the power goes out. To relieve such concerns, we developed a concentrator that automatically switches to supply from an oxygen cylinder in the event of a power outage or malfunction, as well as a model that includes a backup battery as a standard feature.
Liquid oxygen device
These devices gasify liquid oxygen and supply it to patients as highly concentrated oxygen. Because there is no external power source, operation is not affected by power outages. Their portable units can used to refill from a bulk storage reservoir.
Accessories for portable cylinders
Oxygen flow checker
When inhaling oxygen from an oxygen cylinder, if the inhalation volume is small, it may be difficult to tell whether the oxygen gas is flowing through the tube. We developed a visual flow checker to make it easier to see whether the oxygen gas is being supplied.
OXYMED Medical Gas Supply System
High-pressure gas manifold
Drawing on its many years of business experience in the medical gases field, we analyzed near-miss events in hospitals to develop the OXYMED medical gas supply system, which has been pursued for safety and easy to use. Our wide-ranging product lineup and detailed service system enables us to provide a high-quality gas supply system.
Water-18O, a Pharmaceutical Ingredient for Reagents Used in PET Diagnostics
Stable isotope Water-18O
We are the first in the world to successfully manufacture Water-18O, a pharmaceutical ingredient for reagents used in positron emission tomography (PET) diagnostics, through distillation of oxygen based on technologies cultivated in our air separation operations. PET scans are widely used for early detection and diagnosis of cancer. An essential pharmaceutical ingredient for the diagnostic reagent used in PET is water marked with the rare oxygen isotope 18O, known as “Water-18O.”
We currently have three oxygen isotope separation plants in Japan, providing the world’s largest annual production capacity at 600 kg. The final product is manufactured under a quality management system compliant with good manufacturing practice (GMP) at our SI Innovation Center, to supply high-quality Water-18O to approximately 35 countries including Japan.
Contribution to Bioresearch and Development
Induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells were discovered in 2008, and R&D in the field of regenerative medicine using human cells has been accelerating. The practical implementation of regenerative medicine requires the establishment of technology for reliable management of high-quality cultured cells and the cryopreservation of large quantities of living cells, vaccines, and blood. As Japan’s sole manufacturer of liquid nitrogen cryopreservation vessels, we are conducting technology development in areas such as regenerative therapy and biomedicine to create a diverse product lineup.
In the area of cryopreservation of biological samples using liquid nitrogen, we have a market share of roughly 50% in the Japanese market for cryopreservation vessels based on cumulative sales. Using our strengths as Japan’s sole manufacturer of these vessels, we have developed a fully automatic cryopreservation system called CryoLibrary® ADVANCE to meet diverse cryopreservation needs.
Liquid nitrogen cryopreservation system
Biological sample transport container