In brief: Fraud crackdown breaks records, Liberator Medical sales grow
WASHINGTON – The government’s health care fraud prevention and enforcement efforts recovered a record $4.2 billion in taxpayer dollars in FY 2012, up from nearly $4.1 billion in 2011, according to a press release from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). For every dollar spent on health care-related fraud and abuse investigations in the last three years, the government recovered $7.90—the highest three-year average return on investment in the 16-year history of the Health Care Fraud and Abuse (HCFAC) Program, a fact highlighted in the annual HCFAC Program report recently released by Attorney General Eric Holder and HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. Over the last four years, joint enforcement efforts have recovered $14.9 billion, up from $6.7 billion over the prior four-year period. The findings are a “result of President Obama making the elimination of fraud, waste and abuse, particularly in health care, a top priority for the administration,” according to the press release.
Sleep Nation to accept more insurance plans
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Sleep Nation, a provider of continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) equipment, is expanding its managed care contracts, according to a press release. The expansion is a result of consistent growth, which enables the company to be reimbursed by more health plans. “As Sleep Nation grows through acquisitions and internal growth initiatives, gaining full access to these patients through managed care contracting is critical,” stated Richardson Roberts, CEO of Sleep nation. “With many DMEs projected to go out of business due to Medicare’s competitive bidding program, patients run the risk of having difficulty finding a provider who is in-network with their insurance.” In May, Sleep Nation purchased CPAP Care Club, adding 50 new health insurance contracts, Roberts noted.
Liberator Medical reports $17.6 million in quarterly revenue
STUART, Fla. – Sales continue to grow for Liberator Medical, which reported sales of $17.6 million for the quarter ending Dec. 31, 2012, according to an earnings report released today. That’s an 18.6% increase over the same quarter the previous year. The increase in sales was due to the company’s continued direct response advertising campaign to acquire new customers and strong reorder rates from its recurring customer base during the last quarter of the calendar year, according to the release. Liberator’s direct response advertising expenditure for the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2012, was $2.8 million, up from $2.7 million in the same quarter from 2011.
ResMed sets ex-dividend trading date
SAN DIEGO – ResMed began trading ex-dividends Feb. 14, according to an article from Nasdaq. Shareholders who purchased ResMed stock prior to the ex-dividend date are eligible for the cash dividend payment, which will be priced at $0.17 per share, and paid on March 19, 2013. This marks the third quarter ResMed has paid the same dividend, according to the article.
NGS plans oxygen reviews, reports high PAP error rate
WASHINGTON – Due to ongoing high error rates, National Government Services (NGS), the Jurisdiction B DME MAC, plans a widespread prepayment medical review of claims for portable oxygen (E0431) and related equipment, it announced in a message this week. Providers can review the requirements at the NGS website. NGS also reported this week that about two thirds of claims for positive airway pressure devices (PAP) during the fourth quarter of 2012 were denied, according to a prepayment review. Of the 61 claims reviewed for E0601, 40 (68%) were denied. Some of the most common reasons for denial: no face-to-face evaluation, no documentation of instruction on the proper care and use of the device, and invalid detailed written order.
Active Controls, a developer of power mobility device (PMD) technology, is launching a website to highlight its range of products for PMDs. The site, www.activecontrols.com, features information and videos on Center Drive System’s JoyBar and ReJoy drive controls, as well as the PowerBuddy USB charger…Carex Health Brands launched www.carex.com last week. The site features different interfaces for consumers and business-to-business customers… Bonafide Medical Software Solutions is launching an online patient portal that allows patients to purchase DME supplies and make payments through the web sites of HME providers. The portal is HIPAA-compliant, and is a secure way of transmitting patient information and credit card details… Sunset Healthcare Solutions will launch a blog, “Sunset Unfiltered,” on Feb. 26. Sunset employees will interact with HME providers and respiratory patients about the company’s products on the blog, as well as provide photos and videos about new products, news and how-to articles. The blog can be found at www.sunsethcs.com/blog…Wheel:Life, a global initiative assisting people who use wheelchairs, has launched a website for wheelchair users and their families, according to a press release. The website, www.wheel-life.org, will, among other things, help people find quality medical resources and news, explore employment avenues, and research home medical equipment…And, last but not least, AAHomecare last week launched “DME Matters,” a newsletter geared to Congress, the media and the general public about the importance of home medical equipment and how legislation and regulations affect HME providers.
Pharmacists, rehab stakeholders announce conference details
Members can register for the National Community Pharmacists Association’s (NCPA) 45th annual Legislative Conference, scheduled for May 7-8, in Washington, D.C. The conference is designed to bring community pharmacists to Capitol Hill to advocate for the value of independent community pharmacies. NCPA members can register here...Also open for registration: the National CRT Leadership and Advocacy Conference set for April 9-11 in Arlington, Va. Henry Claypool, executive vice president at the American Association of People with Disabilities, will be the keynote speaker. Also presenting are Jean Minkel, senior vice president of rehabilitation services at long-term care non-profit Independence Care System, and several industry experts. The event program and registration information are available at www.ncart.us and www.nrrts.org.
Harrisburg, Pa.-based Dynamic Healthcare Services CEO Terry Luft recently named a new executive line-up: Michael Conner is now COO; David Petrosky is now CFO; and Mary Kay Fehl is now vice president of operations and special projects…Orthotic and Prosthetic Group of America has named Todd Eagen as vice president. Eagen has been a sales director for the group for the past two years.