In briefs: USM debuts, Critical grows

Sunday, February 24, 2008

INDIANAPOLIS - United Seating & Mobility, based in Earth City, Mo., opened its first branch in Indianapolis, expanding its nationwide presence and strengthening its position in the region, the company announced Feb. 5. "After careful consideration, we chose to answer the call to add this location to better accommodate clients' increasing needs," stated Bruce Golatka, USM's Midwest regional manager. "Adding Indianapolis has allowed us to reach out and service more customers by increasing our presence in the Midwest area. We look forward to further success and expansion." Lynn Marschand, formerly of At Home Health Equipment, will head up the Indianapolis branch. USM has 25 locations in nine states.

IV provider poised for growth
CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa. - Critical Homecare Solutions withdrew its initial public offering earlier this month after MBF Healthcare Acquisition Corp. agreed to acquire the infusion company for $420 million. The deal will allow CHS to continue expanding its footprint, said President and CEO Bob Cucuel. "The plan from the beginning has been to become the largest provider of home infusion therapy in the country," said Cucuel. The company formed in September 2006 and now has 65 locations serving more than 15,000 patients in 14 states. Cucuel estimated the CHS currently has about 4% of the market for home infusion. The deal is expected to close in late June or early July, at which time MBF will operate under the CHS name. Cucuel will continue to lead the company.

Lincare expects revenue reductions
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Lincare predicts reductions to Medicare reimbursement will cut into revenue throughout 2008, the company announced Feb. 11. Lincare said it is still determining the full impact of the reductions, but it expects them to reduce revenue by $65 million to $70 million. Lincare reported revenues of $1.79 billion for 2007.

OIG to HealthNow: Recover your money!
WASHINGTON - The Office of Inspector General (OIG) recommended in a report released last week that HealthNow recover $125,402 in overpayments for high-dollar Medicare payments to Part B providers. During calendar years 2003-2005, HealthNow processed 268 Part B payments of $10,000 or more. Of those payments, 249 were appropriate. HealthNow overpaid providers $236,977 for the remaining 19 payments. Providers refunded eight overpayments worth $111,575, leaving 11 overpayment worth $125,402 outstanding. The OIG also recommended that HealthNow consider identifying and recovering any additional overpayments made for high-dollar Part B claims paid after calendar year 2005, and use the results of the audit in its provider education activities. HealthNow agreed with the OIG's recommendations.

Competitive bidding seminar offered at Medtrade Spring
LONG BEACH, Calif. - The VGM Group and the California Association of Medical Equipment Suppliers (CAMPS) will host a daylong seminar on national competitive bidding as part of Medtrade Spring's pre-show conference program. The May 6 seminar is sponsored by Respironics and will discuss the experiences of round one bidders and offer strategies for round 2. Attendees will also get pointers on navigating the electronic bid system, costing and preparing bids and learn about networking and subcontracting opportunities. Cost for the seminar is $279 general admission, and $229 for VGM and CAMPS members.