Feb 23, 2022 by PrimeClean
While buying a used car or washing machine might be a good solution, buying used personal medical equipment is another story… CPAP is officially recognized by the FDA as a Class II medical device, that is used as part of sleep apnea therapy. As such, it should be prescribed exclusively by the licensed M.D., and used for personalized therapy. So, while it is just fine to use someone's (used) CPAP Ozone Disinfector, or any type of CPAP Sterilization machine, or CPAP Cleaner…using someone's (used) CPAP device, is not really a good idea...and here's why…
To start, let's answer the key questions right away:
Can another person use someone’s CPAP? Yes. Is it a good idea to use someone’s (used) CPAP machine? Almost always, no, not a good idea. And is it a good idea to buy a used CPAP? Definite NO!
With that out of the way, let's explain why you shouldn't use or buy a used CPAP machine.
Risks Of Buying & Using Used CPAP Machine
Selling used CPAP machines is illegal for a reason, it is medical equipment and as such, it can influence health both ways making it better or worse if not used properly! To put it simply, if you use a CPAP machine that was already used by someone else before, you are basically using medical equipment that has already been contaminated by another person’s use.
Here are 3 things to think about if considering buying a used CPAP:
Used CPAP masks, hose, and tubing are a definite no! Even if you want to buy/use a used CPAP machine, keep in mind that CPAP accessories and parts such as masks and tubing aren’t that expensive to be worth the risk of buying/using used ones. Even if thoroughly sanitized and cleaned (and no cleaning will guarantee 100% sanitation), the mask and hose are considered expendable parts and need to be replaced in time. This is especially important for the CPAP face mask, which is adjusted to the user's face shape and perfect fit.
The air you breathe in through your CPAP device is clean and safe only if the device is kept clean and maintained correctly. CPAP machine is used six to eight hours per night, and being warm and humid, if not sanitized and maintained properly, over time it becomes an ideal breeding ground for dust, allergens, germs, viruses, and other harmful pathogens. This may raise the possibility of nasty colds, sinus infections, and even pneumonia, tuberculosis, parasites…
A CPAP therapy can be expensive for some... However, it is covered by Medicare, so that should help you decide to buy a new machine, as it is by far the best solution. Here’s what Medicare says about CPAP coverage:
“Medicare may cover Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) therapy if you’ve been diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea. Medicare may cover a 3-month trial of CPAP therapy. Medicare may cover it longer if you meet in person with your doctor, and your doctor documents in your medical record that you meet certain conditions about the use of the device and the CPAP therapy is helping you.”
And even if you are already a CPAP user that needs to replace a broken CPAP machine, you might still have Medicare coverage for buying a new one:
“If you had a CPAP machine before you got Medicare, Medicare may cover CPAP machine cost for replacement CPAP machine rental and/or CPAP accessories if you meet certain requirements.”
Since CPAP machine is recognized as a Class II medical device by the FDA, is it even legal to sell used CPAP? First of all, it is not legal to sell a CPAP machine to someone who does not have a valid prescription for it. And second, it is not legal to sell a CPAP device, unless someone is an FDA (the U.S. Food and Drug Administration) approved/authorized seller (or reseller).
Selling CPAP accessories and equipment parts, such as CPAP mask, hose, tubing parts, humidifier, CPAP Ozone Disinfector, or any type of CPAP Sterilization machine, or CPAP Cleaner, or wipes…is legal and doesn’t require any special FDA sale approval.
Is it legal to sell used CPAP machines? Yes, no laws are preventing the sale of used CPAP machines. However, any reseller that does sell used CPAP machines, usually actually sell refurbished CPAP machine.
Of course, if possible, a new CPAP machine is always the best option. However, our budget reality sometimes dictates different solutions… So, if it comes to buying a second-hand CPAP machine, although it might be slightly more expensive, considering all previously said, a refurbished CPAP machine is a smarter and safer alternative to a used one.
You do however must make sure to find a trustworthy reseller! So, look for one that verifies CPAP prescriptions, as they are more likely to follow FDA guidelines on testing and sanitization.
Also, before first use, make sure to run at least one or two cleaning/sanitation processes using a good, effective CPAP cleaner.
Do yourself a favor with this one and spend a bit more money on your CPAP. It’s about your health, and in the end, it will for sure end up being a cheaper solution.