In brief: Acquisitions, buying groups, product challenges and more

Sunday, January 13, 2008

ATLANTA – Graham-Field finished off 2007 with a bang, announcing Dec. 31 that it had acquired Lumiscope, a medical equipment manufacturer that does a lot of business with Wal-Mart, Walgreens and other national chains.

“This should prove our credibility, in terms of financial stability,” said Ken Spett, senior vice president of G-F’s Medical Surgical Division. “We have the cash to go about making some significant acquisitions, and we are looking at several others.”

Lumiscope brings to G-F more than significant business with large drug chains and mass marketers. The deal includes a familiar product line (for example: electrotherapy units, nebulizers, blood-pressure monitors, thermometers and orthopedic supports), additional U.S. manufacturing capability and efficiencies that come from consolidating administrative and operational expenses, Spett said.

For HME providers, the deal boosts G-F’s product offering, making the company more attractive as a one-stop-shop for home medical equipment. That’s important as providers attempt to consolidate their purchasing to reduce paperwork and meet minimums for free shipping, Spett said.

Lumiscope, based in Piscataway, N.J., will transition its customer service, quality assurance, engineering, technical support and repair departments, warehousing and manufacturing to G-F’s existing East Rutherford, N.J., complex.

By combining Lumiscope’s textile manufacturing operation with G-F’s factories in Rhode Island and Wisconsin (steel), G-F can now offer more high-quality items and produce them faster than comparable items made oversees and exported to the United States, Spett said.

“The better quality fabrics are still being made in the United States,” he said. “This acquisition also gives us the ability to have some harder-to-find, low-volume items that you can’t get overseas unless you are going to buy 50,000 of them.”

Spett declined to disclose how much G-F paid for Lumiscope.

Fastrack forms buying group
PLAINVIEW, N.Y. – Fastrack Healthcare has formed a free member services organization for HME, respiratory, infusion and home healthcare agencies, the software vendor announced last week. Providers do not have to be a Fastrack customer to join, President Spencer Kay stated in a release. Membership benefits include discounts on equipment and supplies from manufacturers; special promotions and purchasing incentives; alerts about new products and services; and access to a members-only Web site. hosts second product challenge
HOUSTON – plans to put full-face masks by Respironics and PMI Probasics head-to-head in its second CPAP Product Challenge, the company announced last week. currently seeks 50 volunteers to use Respironics’ ComfortFull2 full-face mask and PMI ProBasic’s Zzz-Mask full-face mask for two weeks and then fill out a detailed survey. In’s first product challenge, the ResMed Swift II mask edged out the RespCare Bravo mask 40 to 10.

Sleep Holdings favors Respironics
DALLAS – Sleep Holdings has tapped Respironics as its main manufacturer of choice for providing sleep diagnostic equipment at all its locations, the company announced last week. Sleep Holdings is a diagnostic sleep lab company that operates freestanding and hospital-based locations. Tim Kriske, COO of Sleep Holdings, stated in a release: “The interest they have shown to help us deliver the very best quality sleep studies and then help us fulfill the patients’ needs with consumer focused CPAP or BIPAP machines has been helpful in increasing our revenues by up to 45% in some of our locations.”