The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has approved three new portable oxygen concentrator (POC) devices for use on commercial airlines. The new devices include the AirSep FreeStyle, Respironics EverGo, and SeQual Eclipse. A summary of the action in the Federal Register states, “This action is necessary to allow all POC devices deemed acceptable by the FAA to be available to the traveling public in need of oxygen therapy for use in air commerce,” and Cheryl West, Director of Government Affairs for the American Association for Respiratory Care says, “This is good news for oxygen users everywhere. Now patients can choose from five different devices, including a device that allows for continuous flow.”
A provision mandating that POCs use pulse oximetry only has also been lifted. With the elimination of this provision, pulse dose delivery and continuous flow devices can now obtain approval.
Currently 18 airlines permit POCs on board, but the AARC plans to work with the Department of Transportation to issue a final rule that would require that all airlines permit POCs.