In brief: Invacare sees share activity, Mini-Max opens in retirement community

Friday, May 3, 2013

ELYRIA, Ohio – Following Invacare’s earnings release April 25, a slew of board members and execs have bought shares of the company’s stock. Chairman Mal Mixon bought 45,700 shares at a cost of $12.53, and CEO Gerry Blouch bought 1,000 shares at a cost of $13.59. The following board members also bought shares: Ellen Tauscher and Dale LaPorte each bought 1,000 shares at a cost of $12.30 and $12.24, respectively; William Weber bought 5,000 shares at a cost of $12.15; and Baiju Shah bought 1,000 shares at varying costs. Additionally, Senior Vice President Lou Slangen bought 1,000 shares at a cost of $13.05. Invacare reported net sales for the first quarter of 2013 decreased 4.9% to $337.6 million compared to the same period last year. In the North America/HME segment, where the company has been hardest hit by a consent decree that limits manufacturing at its Taylor Street manufacturing facility, Invacare reported net sales decreased 13.6% to $152.2 million.

Coming soon: HME store in retirement community

NAPLES, Fla. – Max-Wellness, a Cleveland-based health and wellness company, will open a Mini-Max store in an upscale retirement community that is home to 700 residents on May 7, according to a press release. Located within a 37,000-square-foot facility on the campus of Moorings Park, product offerings will include mobility devices, braces, supports and other HME, the release noted. Max-Wellness CEO Michael Feuer characterized the store as a “prototype operation” to be used as a “springboard for future expansion in other markets throughout the country.” In 2011, Max-Wellness opened a Mini-Max store in the lobby of a local acute care hospital, Lake Health’s West Medical Center in Willoughby, Ohio.

Report: M&A down in Q1 2013

DUBLIN, Ireland – Mergers and acquisitions in the medical equipment industry, along with asset transactions, were down 14% in the first quarter of 2013, according to a report from Research and Markets, a global market research firm. There were 139 deals in the first quarter of 2013, compared to 162 deals in the same quarter of 2012, the report noted. The fourth quarter of 2012 saw 164 deals close. “Deal activity slowed as companies have been apprehensive about their investments owing to macroeconomic and geopolitical concerns,” authors of the report stated. Healthcare IT and in-vitro diagnostic markets recorded the highest number of deals in the first quarter, according to the report. One high-profile deal in the first quarter: Cardinal Health’s acquisition of AssuraMed for $2.07 billion.

CareFusion pays $41M to resolve allegations

SAN DIEGO – CareFusion, a manufacturer of home infusion pumps and respiratory products, has reached an agreement in principle to pay $41 million to the government to resolve an investigation related to prior sales and marketing practices and its relationships with healthcare professionals, according to a press release. The company will record the charge in the third quarter of fiscal year 2013 to establish a reserve for this amount. In connection with these matters, CareFusion has entered into a non-prosecution agreement, the release noted. “Since our spinoff (from Cardinal Health), we have made significant investments to improve our quality systems, including our sales and marketing practices, and we remain committed to adhering to the highest standards,” stated Kieran Gallahue, chairman and CEO. The agreement remains subject to several conditions, including the completion and execution of a formal settlement agreement and other required documentation, according to the release.

MedBridge acquires pair of providers

GREENVILLE, S.C. – MedBridge Healthcare has completed the acquisitions of two Fargo, N.D.-based sleep care providers: Precision Diagnostic Systems, a provider of sleep diagnostic and testing services; and SleepEasy Therapeutics, a provider of CPAP and respiratory services. The acquisitions expand MedBridge’s geographic footprint to service patients in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan and Wisconsin, according to a press release. “The combined businesses complement each other very well and the acquisition solidifies MedBridge’s position as one of the largest healthcare platforms in the sleep disorder and CPAP therapy market,” stated Klaus Koch, chairman of the board and managing partner at Vicente Capital Partners, the investment firm that owns MedBridge.

Provider news

JustHomeMedical.comhas established a $1,000 scholarship for students studying to be in the healthcare industry. The scholarship is open to those studying to be a doctor, nurse, pharmacist, physical therapist, dentist, medical technician or other healthcare-related professional…If all goes as planned, All-States Medical will more than double the size of its staff in the next two months, adding 50 new employees. The growth is a result of the company providing HME to an expanded territory as part of Round 2 of competitive bidding, the release noted…Numotion, the company formed from the merger of ATG Rehab and United Seating and Mobility, now offers a midline mounting system for power wheelchair drive controls from Active Controls, according to a press release. The ReJoy joystick platform allows users to re-position armrest-mounted hand controls in up to three locations on any power wheelchair.

Vendor news

Quantum Rehab, a division of Pride Mobility Products, is boosting the production capacity, delivery capabilities, parts inventory and staff support for Quantum Western America. Based in Las Vegas, Quantum Western America expects the moves to increase business efficiency and help patients receive mobility products faster…Inogen, a manufacturer and provider of respiratory products, has received a 2013 World Trade Week Export Achievement Award. The award recognizes companies that have demonstrated sustained success in exporting their products globally…Convaid is teaming up with Nehemiah Vision Ministries (NVM), a nonprofit charitable organization, to help provide special needs children in Haiti with custom wheelchairs, according to a press release. The company has donated two Tilt-in-Space Rodeo wheelchairs to the cause…Managed Health Care Associates (MHA), a group purchasing organization (GPO) that acquired The MED Group in 2010, has been acquired by Roper Industries, a diversified growth company based in Sarasota, Fla.

People news

The van Halem Group has hired Jane Naig to serve as a senior clinical consultant. Naig, a registered nurse, has 30 years of experience in medical investigations, quality assurance and clinical data analysis from her time spent working for Medicare, where she focused on the areas of medical review and program integrity…Brightree has named Rob Boeye as its chief revenue officer. Prior to joining Brightree, Boeye served as vice president for Invacare Corporation.