In brief: Manufacturers spend, DuoNeb escapes

Sunday, June 29, 2008

ELYRIA, Ohio - An editorial in the June 26 edition of USA Today states that HME industry lobbying efforts to delay national competitive bidding have been backed with "significant campaign cash." Quoting CQ Today, the editorial states "the people associated with five large equipment suppliers or the industry's trade group, the American Association for Homecare, have given more than $427,000 to campaign committees in 2007-08." Invacare spent $230,000 on lobbying during the first quarter of 2008, according to a form filed April 11 with the House of Representatives. That's small potatoes compared to the 10 biggest spenders on lobbying in 2007, including the American Medical Association, $22,132,000; the American Hospital Association, $19,734,545; and the AARP, $19,540,000, according to a June article in America's Pharmacist.

DuoNeb escapes cut
WASHINGTON - CMS on June 20 delayed a planned payment cut for DuoNeb (J7620). The agency planned to reduce reimbursement for the drug July 1, paying it at the same rate as separate vials of albuterol and ipratropium. The latest average sales price for DuoNeb is 58 cents. Albuterol (J7613) is at 10 cents per dose and ipratropium (J7644) is 20 cents. CMS has delayed the payment cuts for DuoNeb until Nov. 1.

SeQual's Richard moves up
SAN DIEGO - SeQual Technologies has promoted Ron Richard from senior vice president of sales and marketing to CEO, the respiratory manufacturer announced last week. The change takes effect July 1. "During (Richard's) tenure, the company has experienced rapid growth attributable to sales and marketing, and has continued to expand globally with the establishment of an E.U. headquarters," SeQual stated in a release. "The sales and marketing channels have been greatly expanded and the company has begun playing an increasingly significant role in industry groups." Richard replaces Jim Bixby, who remains a member of SeQual's board of directors. Prior to joining SeQual last year, Richard was ResMed's senior vice president of strategic marketing for the Americas.