In brief: Invacare sticks to target, Quality Biomedical takes on investor

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Friday, September 13, 2019

ELYRIA, Ohio – Invacare reaffirmed its long-term target of $85 million to $105 million adjusted EBITDA run-rate by the fourth quarter of 2020 at the Baird Global Healthcare Conference in New York on Sept. 4.

Invacare’s Matt Monaghan said the company expects to achieve the goal through a combination of net sales growth driven by new product introductions, supply chain actions to expand gross margin and cost-optimization initiatives to meaningfully reduce SG&A expense.

“After four years of foundation building, we are pleased to see the results having a positive effect on our reported financial performance,” said Monaghan, chairman, president and CEO. “Our regions continue to focus on commercial excellence, while the rest of the business is taking advantage of global synergies and expertise. As a result, new product introductions are coming at a more rapid pace, cash flow is improving and overall operating results reflect better efficiencies. We expect these trends to continue through 2020.

Monaghan also said the 15% tariffs on $112 billion in Chinese imports that went into effect Sept. 1, 2019, will have an unfavorable impact of less than $200,000. The company continues to take supply chain actions to mitigate the previously announced tariffs, in addition to the 15% tariffs that are set to go into effect Dec. 15, 2019.

Quality Biomedical takes on investor to build nationwide presence and expand beyond HME

BOULDER, Colo. – Quality Biomedical has completed an outside investment by Aeonic Partners, a New York-based private equity firm. It’s the first institutional investor for Quality Biomedical, which provides integrated logistics, warehousing, service/repair, documentation management and other related services, all underpinned by its Q-Connect technology platform. Quality Biomedical will use the investment for “Phase 2 of its growth strategy,” which includes opening new service centers and warehouses over the next 12 to 18 months to more efficiently cover the Northeast, Midwest and West. The company currently operates service centers in five states: Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Missouri and Texas. Aeonic Partners “employs a buy-and-hold strategy, which allows us to take an extremely long-term view to growing and managing businesses,” according to its website.

Guilty plea entered in fraud scheme

WASHINGTON – The owner and CEO of a telemedicine company has pleaded guilty to a $424 million conspiracy to defraud Medicare and receive illegal kickbacks in exchange for DME orders, the Department of Justice has announced.

Lester Stockett, the owner of Video Doctor USA and Telemed Health Group, has pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States and pay and receive healthcare kickbacks, and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. In connection with his plea agreement, he has agreed to pay $200 million in restitution to the United States, as well as forfeit assets and property traceable to proceeds of the conspiracy.

Stockett, of Medellin, Columbia, admitted to soliciting and receiving illegal kickbacks and bribes from patient recruiters, pharmacies, brace suppliers and others in exchange for arranging doctors to order medically unnecessary orthotic braces for beneficiaries of Medicare and other insurers.

The beneficiaries were contacted through an international telemarketing network that lured hundreds of thousands of elderly and/or disabled patients into a criminal scheme that crossed borders, involving call centers in the Philippines and throughout Latin America.

Earlier this year, the feds charged 24 defendants with a $1.2 billion scheme involving illegal kickbacks and bribes by DME companies in exchange for referrals of Medicare beneficiaries by medical professionals working with fraudulent telemedicine companies for back, shoulder, wrist and knee braces.

NSM makes two promotions

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – National Seating & Mobility has promoted Isaac Rodriguez to senior vice president of strategic development and Jason Miele to Rodriguez’s previous role, regional vice president of the east region. Rodriguez will support the organization with revenue diversification and productivity opportunities, including home access, product programs, workers’ compensation, ATP productivity and other adjacent markets. Miele will oversee branch operations throughout the region. He was previously regional area director.

CureDuchenne publishes DME guide

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. – CureDuchenne has launched an interactive website called the “Durable Medical Equipment Guide” to help caregivers navigate the best equipment for their loved ones with Duchenne. The guide will be updated regularly to provide current information. “While parents and caregivers are determined to find the equipment that will help keep their loved ones active in any way possible, we are determined to help them make the best decisions by providing them with all the resources they need in one place,” said Debra Miller, founder and CEO of CureDuchenne. The website includes information on mobility devices, orthoses, home medical equipment and respiratory devices. It also features helpful links and downloadable information about equipment and proper use, and educational videos. CureDuchenne is a nonprofit dedicated to extending and improving the lives of the 300,000 boys worldwide who have Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a degenerative disease with no known cure.

Carolina’s HME launches breast pump division

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Carolina’s Home Medical Equipment, Inc., has launched a new division, CHMEI BreastPumps. CHMEI BreastPumps has partnered with Spectra, Medela and others to offer industry leading breast pumps and accessories through a simple three-step process that allows women to get their breast pumps covered by insurance and shipped right to their doorstep. “There are about 120,000 live births each year in North Carolina alone,” said Andrew Trammell, president and CEO of Carolina’s. “We’re excited to expand this line of business and improve the ease and access for new moms.”

ExceleraRx launches home infusion solution

MINNEAPOLIS – ExceleraRx has launched Excelera Home Infusion Solutions, a new consulting, project management and revenue cycle management solution that enables health systems to build and manage a home infusion pharmacy. The program offers a blueprint and playbook for building an infusion pharmacy, with topics ranging from ongoing management of clean rooms to project management to payer contracting. "With our extensive experience building and operationalizing point-of-care specialty pharmacies for some of the nation's leading health networks, home infusion is yet another way we are helping our members positively impact more lives," said Don Amorosi, COO. “We have worked to develop the best practice models for staffing, workflow, and finance needed to build and launch a successful home infusion pharmacy."

NHIA to co-locate annual event in 2020

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – The National Home Infusion Association and the International Academy of Compounding Pharmacists will co-locate their annual conferences in Denver in 2020. NHIA’s 2020 Annual Conference, held April 5-9, and IACP’s EduCon 2020, tentatively scheduled for April 7-9, will be held concurrently at the Gaylord Rockies Conference Center. “This co-location allows us to expose our respective members to different practices and business models, as well as expand education opportunities for both groups of attendees,” said Connie Sullivan, NHI president and CEO. “Our mutual goal is to provide attendees with an enriched networking and learning experience.”

Mayo Clinic Store opens new branch

OWATONNA, Minn. – The Mayo Clinic Store will hold an open house Sept. 19 to celebrate its new retail location. The store will offer CPAP and BIPAP devices and supplies, compression garments, ostomy supplies, urology supplies, wound care, mobility aids, daily living aids, and nebulizers, according to southernminn.com. The new location will feature private fitting rooms for CPAP, compression garments and other DME. “We regularly consult with doctors and providers to ensure that we have the equipment and supplies they are recommending and prescribing to their patients,” said Aaron Johnson, manager, in the article. “We take the guesswork out of insurance and work closely with our customers to inform them about their options and coverage, and file the insurance for their eligible items.”

WellSky Foundation awards grant

LENEXA, Kan. – WellSky Foundation has awarded $50,000 to Hephzibah Children’s Association to provide short- and long-term group housing for children recovering from abuse and neglect. The WellSky Foundation, a nonprofit launched earlier this year by WellSky, is a nonprofit dedicated to improving quality of life by removing social barriers to better health outcomes. The Oak Park, Ill.–based Hephzibah Children’s Association offers a wide range of comprehensive child welfare and family services, including foster care and adoption programs; educational programs for low-income families with infants, toddlers and preschoolers; and day care for families of all income levels.

VGM, Medtrade on the hunt for retail products

ATLANTA – VGM’s Retail Product Pavilion will make its debut at Medtrade, Oct. 21-23 at the Georgia World Congress Center. The pavilion, which will be partly designed and furnished by Medtrade exhibitor KC Store Fixtures, will showcase the latest cash products, according to Rob Baumhover, director of retail at VGM. “Medtrade and VGM Retail are looking for vendors to enter their products in this showcase,” he said. “Providers will have the opportunity to vote on which vendor product they feel can capture their customers’ interest the most. The vendor who is selected will be recognized by VGM Retail to have the most innovative cash product offering.” Vendors that would like to submit their retail products should contact Mark Lind, associate show director, at mark.lind@emeraldexpo.com. “Our goal is to spark ideas and bring to light products that can help our attendees boost sales and expand their retail portfolio,” he said.