When Isabella Rivers was born, she could fit in the palms of two hands. Weighing nothing more than a pound, the tiny baby was born premature and had complications. She suffered from chronic lung disease, a condition that goes hand in hand with extreme prematurity.

On Tuesday, her mother, Heather Stokley, spoke to a panel of specialists, media and healthcare professionals during Tuesday's webinar hosted by Royal Philips Respironics (Andover, Massachusetts).

"For ll months she could not go outside to feel the wind on her face," Stokley said.

It was because of a portable ventilation system – devices that Philips' Respironics unit excels in making- that Isabella was able to get the care she needed for a normal life, her mother said.

"I never thought as a mother that I would have a special needs child, now I wouldn't have it any other way," she told the virtual audience.

Most recently the company has introduced three new respiratory support devices: the Respironics V60 and v200 and Trilogy100 ventilators.

These solutions are intended to support breathing in the intensive care, sub-acute and homecare settings. As a family of products, the company said that these three devices are well-suited to address the ventilation care challenges that clinicians face regularly. These problems include treating respiratory failure from exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) while avoiding ventilator-associated pneumonia.

The devices are in a market where there is an expected jump from the 250,000 prolonged mechanical ventilation cases reported in 2000 to 650,898 by 2020.

During the webinar, the company focused on the Trilogy 100, a lightweight, life-support ventilator that can be used in the home and in alternative care settings.

Weighing only 11 pounds the device includes a three-hour internal and detachable battery, with ventilation data from the patient stored on an SD memory card. It's a move that some specialists are saying revolutionizes ventilation care.

"The use of a memory device gives clinicians the ability to remotely access information on their patients," said Christine Cunningham, a registered respiratory therapist and a panel speaker at the event. "That's the road I think we're headed down."

The device also includes a six-inch color display monitor and the ability to lock keypad buttons so they aren't accidently changed.

"Trilogy100 has been designed to help caregivers and clinicians more easily administer care in the home and allow patients to be as active as possible while using the ventilator," said John Frank, VP and general manager, home respiratory care, for Philips Healthcare in a statement. "Its ease of use, versatility, and portability make Trilogy100 a significant advancement in home respiratory support."

Philips has been on an upward spiral as of late. The company's acquisition of Dixtal Biomédica e Tecnologia (São Paulo, Brazil) cemented its position even further into the non-invasive ventilation business (Medical Device Daily, May 15, 2008) Prior to that its nearly $5.2 billion acquisition earlier this year of Respironics (Murrysville, Pennsylvania) gave it a significant a far greater significant boost.

In the deal for Respironics, Philips commenced a tender offer to acquire all of the outstanding shares of the company for $66 a share in cash, or about $5.1 billion, a premium of about 31% over Respironics' average closing share price.

Respironics develops systems to treat obstructive sleep apnea (OSA); estimating 18 million to 20 million sufferers of moderate or severe OSA in the U.S., but only 15% to 20% of these are diagnosed. It also cites research demonstrating a link between OSA, heart disease, stroke and diabetes.

The company says it has a leading position in non-invasive ventilation and has recently introduced new home oxygen technologies to treat respiratory-impaired patients in the home.

The remainder of the company's business is focused on the hospital channel, including noninvasive and invasive ventilation, respiratory monitoring, neonatal products and respiratory drug delivery technologies. Respironics markets its products in 141 countries and employs more than 5,300 worldwide.