AssuraMed buys UroMed in ‘tuck-in acquisition’

Friday, January 17, 2014

DUBLIN, Ohio – AssuraMed has quietly bought another competitor of its Edgepark Medial Supply business unit: UroMed, a Suwanee, Ga.-based provider of urological, incontinence and other disposable medical supplies.

Employees at UroMed were told of the acquisition on Friday, Jan. 10, according to industry sources. When contacted by HME News the following week, officials at AssuraMed confirmed the news.

“AssuraMed did acquire UroMed,” said Michael Petras, president and general manager.

In January 2013, AssuraMed, which is owned by healthcare giant Cardinal Health, bought Invacare Supply Group (ISG) from Invacare for $150 million. Terms of the UroMed acquisition were not disclosed.

Petras described UroMed as “a small, tuck-in acquisition, which aligns with and expands our Edgepark platform to service urological patients.”

“We are acquiring UroMed’s patient list and Edgepark will take on responsibility for their referral sources,” he said.

UroMed was an attractive target for Edgepark largely because of its roster of Medicaid and Medicare patients. It’s a Medicare provider in 48 states and a Medicaid provider in 29 states. By contrast, the bulk of Edgepark’s patients are private-pay.

“We will leverage UroMed’s expertise, allowing them to provide service to Edgepark referral sources and patients that we can’t service today,” he said. “And we’ll expand service to existing customers of both companies.”

Sources say UroMed’s Medicare patient base also better positions AssuraMed and Edgepark in the event that urological supplies are included in a future round of CMS’s expanding competitive bidding program.

“They’re now in a stronger position to win contracts for urology if it comes down to that,” said one source.

The fact that AssuraMed has bought another provider, despite concerns about it also owning Independence Medical, a distributor, means the company didn’t suffer too much backlash from its controversial purchase of ISG, sources say.

“They didn’t get bit by bad press on ISG, so this is a logical move,” one source said.

Petras reiterated that Edgepark and Independence are separate business units with separate IT systems.

“Information regarding patients of Independence Medical customers is not shared with Edgepark,” he said. “Maintaining separation and the protection of customers and their information is vital to our business model.”


What executive came up with that term? What does it mean? Does it make good business sense to do business with them?

Small DME companies that have managed to find a niche or two in the cloud of competitive bidding are challenged with the 500 lb gorillas like Assuramed/UroMed.   Acquisitions like this are teeing it up for CMS and insurance companies to go manufacturer direct to client.  I guess this is a good business model for some.  It is not without precedent.   If you follow the thinking, why would there be a need for all the accrediting bodies, numerous auditing sources or DME regions, get the gist.  Our clients really don't know how good they have it and CMS doesn't care about service.   The small guy is a dinosaur and it is getting colder.