CMS gives Strutters crutches own HCPCS

Friday, January 31, 2003

KENSINGTON, Md. - Orthotic Mobility’s bid to revolutionize the crutch market got some firepower from CMS last month when the company’s Strutters received its own HCPCS, E0117. OM expects CMS to pay about $380 for its articulating, spring-assisted crutches. Medicare pays about $50-$60 for crutches.
“Getting a code for Strutters is enormous,” said Philip Neri Lyons, the company’s v.p. of sales and marketing. “So many people, including Hanger [Orthopedic Group, the largest provider of orthotic and prosthetic services in the United States] said you get the code, and we’ll carry them. They’ve refused to without it.”

Where traditional crutches distribute weight over a few square inches under the rams, creating fertile ground for a damaging nerve condition known as crutch palsey, the Strutter’s U-shaped under arm supports distribute weight over 18 inches of skin surface. Using a parallelogram-brace design, springs and an articulated foot, the Strutter was designed to ease users through their gait instead of swinging them through the arc of a crutch-step. HME