In brief: Cardinal targets the home, EZ-Access makes buy

Friday, September 18, 2015

DUBLIN, Ohio – Cardinal Health now offers certain products direct to the consumer through a new “Hospital Quality at Home” brand.

The brand offers products in advanced wound care, first aid, personal care and home healthcare.

“We remain committed to keeping the quality of patient care at the forefront, which is why Hospital Quality at Home products are a natural next step for our business,” said Heather O’Sullivan, vice president of clinical operations for Cardinal Health. “We understand that providing access to the same quality products used in hospitals can positively impact many lives.”

Select “Hospital Quality at Home” products are available nationwide on Products are also available at select Meijer Pharmacy and Bartell Drugs locations in the Midwest and Washington state.

Cardinal Health is a $103 billion-company that distributes products to pharmacies, hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers, clinical laboratories and physician offices.

In another outside-the-box move, it recently acquired a majority stake in naviHealth, a Nashville, Tenn.-based company that partners with health plans, health system and providers to manage post-acute care.

EZ-Access makes buy

ALGONA, Wash. – EZ-Access took a step toward expansion this week, acquiring Worldwide Mobility, it announced Sept. 14.

The move will allow EZ-Access, which manufactures accessibility products, including portable wheelchair ramps and wheelchair lifts, to add a line of external power vehicle lifts to its offerings, according to a release. The Mesa, Ariz.-based Worldwide Mobility has made scooter and power wheelchair lifts for more than 25 years.

“With the introduction of the Passport Vertical Platform Lift in 2014 and now the addition of external power vehicle lifts, we remain committed to offering our customers a complete line of products for all access solutions,” said Don Everard, EZ-Access CEO. “We are grateful for the years of loyalty dealers have shown us and believe that we can continue to build on our commitment as we expand our product offerings to help create opportunity for them.”

EZ-Access will move Worldwide Mobility’s manufacturing to its Algona, Wash., headquarters, and anticipates hiring additional employees and adding production space, according to the release.

CMS makes face-to-face changes official

WASHINGTON – CMS has updated its website to reflect a new law that allows a nurse practitioner, physician assistant or clinical nurse specialist to document a written order for DME following a face-to-face encounter. Originally, they could conduct the face-to-face encounter, but they needed a sign-off from a physician. CMS also stated on its website: “CMS will not start actively enforcing or expect full compliance with the DME face-to-face requirement until further notice.” The delay in enforcement applies to DME MAC, RAC, ZPIC and PSC reviews, but does not apply to CERT audits. The agency implemented the face-to-face rule on July 1, 2013, but hasn’t started enforcing it yet. CMS began enforcing a rule requiring detailed written orders on Jan. 1, 2014.

Dickinson Home Medical expands service

IRON MOUNTAIN, Mich. – Dickinson Home Medical Equipment is opening a second location in Bark River, Mich. The expansion, which was approved by Dickinson County Healthcare System's board of trustees, was prompted by requests from Delta County-based physicians to service their patients, according to a release. “We are pleased to accept the invitation to bring our home medical supply service to Delta County," said Randy Holmes, manager of Dickinson Home Medical, in the release. The expansion is expected to be completed by the end of October.

COPD trial uses mobile health to provide rehab at home

MINNEAPOLIS – The Minnesota HealthSolutions Corporation has tapped Novum, a consumer health engagement platform, as a partner on a mobile health clinical trial program designed to motivate and monitor people with COPD. Many of the millions of people affected with COPD are not able to participate in pulmonary rehab in a clinical setting and the program, delivered through the Novu platform, will enable them to complete home exercise more easily, according to a press release. “We believe that digital consumer tools can enable traditional protocols to work more efficiently in reaching patients, reducing hospital admissions and creating better outcomes,” said Ali Shirvani-Mahdavi, executive vice president of strategy and programs at Novu. In its next phase, the program will be evaluated in a controlled human study at the Mayo Clinic. Novu recently raised $20 million in funding from SSM Partners and Noro-Moseley Partners.

VGM nabs top spot for workplaces

WATERLOO, Iowa – The VGM Group has been named the No. 1 large workplace in Iowa by the Des Moines Register. The ranking is based on scientific surveys of employees conducted by Workplace Dynamics. This is the third time VGM has placed in the top three workplaces. “We want to have the best and brightest to provide great value and service to our thousands of customers,” said CFO Mike Mallaro. “Being recognized as the Top Workplace in Iowa is an affirmation of what we are doing for employees and customers.” VGM has 850 employees and more than 25,000 business customers, according to a release.

Invacare sponsors sports clinic

ELYRIA, Ohio – Invacare is sponsoring the National Veterans Summer Sports Clinic, Sept. 13-18 in San Diego. The clinic offers adventure sports and recreational activities, such as sailing, surfing, track and field events, kayaking and cycling (hand and tandem), to those who were recently injured. “The clinic helps participants improve their quality of life and realize that a disability doesn’t mean they can’t live life to the fullest,” said Dean Childers, senior vice president, Invacare. The company is a frequent supporter of events, including the National Veterans Golden Age Games in August.

Short takes

MiraVista, a consulting and outsourced billing company for DME providers, has redesigned its website to make its industry updates, and education events and tools front and center. The new site is also mobile friendly…PMDRX recently demoed its mobility exam and documentation technology to the office of U.S. Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz. With help from Franks’ office, PMDRX has completed an application for a $250,000 Arizona Innovation Challenge grant that would allow it to launch an aggressive marketing campaign to broaden its outreach to prescribing practitioners and mobility suppliers…Medtradewill have a dedicated area for showcasing point-of-purchase displays. “Ideas in Caretail: Point-of-Purchase and Small Spaces” will be offered in cooperation with The VGM Group and KC Fixtures. Medtrade will take place Oct. 26-29 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta…Noridian Healthcare Solutions has been re-awarded a contract for Jurisdiction D. It has administered the contract since 2006, processing claims for 17 states in the Midwest and West, plus American Samoa, Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands.

People news

Sandwich, Mass.-based Cape Medical Supply has promoted Michael Sheehan to COO. Sheehan has been the company’s executive vice president of purchasing and inventory since joining the company in 2007. In his new role, Sheehan will oversee much of the day-to-day operations of Cape Medical Supply. Sheehan’s brother, Gary Sheehan, is the company’s CEO. Cape Medical Supply was founded and has been run by the Sheehan family for almost 40 years…Jim Papac has rejoined Wohlen, Switzerland-based LEVO AG as president of Minneapolis-based LEVO USA. He introduced the company’s standing wheelchairs to the U.S. and Canadian markets in 1996. Most recently, Papac was the national standing products sales manager for Permobil…National Seating & Mobility has named Ann Mahaffey its new vice president of human resources.Mahaffey is tasked with developing human capital strategies, talent acquisition, performance management, organizational structure, total rewards programs and building a high performance culture…AAHomecare has hired Megan Friedlander as communications associate. Friedlander will work closely with AAH staff to keep members up to date on the latest news and initiatives from Washington, D.C.