In brief: CMS drops deadlines, Brightree cashes in

Sunday, July 20, 2008

WASHINGTON - CMS last week cancelled special accreditation deadlines for providers who planned to participate in Round 2 of competitive bidding. Previously, suppliers had to be accredited or apply to become accredited by July 21, 2008, to submit Round 2 bids. They had to complete accreditation by Jan. 14, 2009, to win contracts. The Sept. 30, 2009, accreditation deadline for all providers stands.

Brightree cashes in
DULUTH, Ga. - Brightree announced last week that it has received a "significant investment" from Battery Ventures, a Boston-based venture capital and private equity firm with $3 billion under management. Brightree plans to use the financing to "accelerate its growth, consolidate the market it serves and expand into new markets," according to a release. "While we could continue our growth without outside investment, we see an opportunity to consolidate the markets we serve today by investing more in our customers' success than our competitors do, and taking our successful business model into complementary markets such as home health, retail pharmacy and long term care," stated President and CEO Dave Cormack in the release. Brightree was advised by Croft & Bender in Atlanta and Siavage Law Group in Atlanta on the transaction. Other details were not disclosed.

Firm investigates Apria, Blackstone deal
LAKE FOREST, Calif. - Levi & Korinsky will investigate The Blackstone Group's proposed acquisition of Apria Healthcare, it announced last week. The New York law firm specializes in securities and shareholder litigation. Shareholders are expected to vote on the acquisition in September. The acquisition recently cleared an antitrust regulatory review. Apria announced June 19 that it had negotiated a $1.6 billion buyout offer from Blackstone, one of the largest private equity firms in the United States.

NCART wins award
ARLINGTON, Va. - RESNA gave NCART its Leadership Award at its annual conference in late June. The organization gives the award to "an agency, company, association or university that has significantly contributed to the advancement of assistive technology and has provided recognition and support for RESNA," according to a release. RESNA recognized NCART for its efforts to ensure adequate consumer access to appropriate technology and services. Among NCART's accomplishments: monitoring and reporting regulatory changes; providing input to Medicare and Medicaid; and sponsoring three successful congressional fly-ins and two rehab fairs.