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In brief: Quipt acquires, Humana divests, F&P debuts

In brief: Quipt acquires, Humana divests, F&P debuts Company also provides update on inventory of CPAP devices

CINCINNATI – Quipt Home Medical has acquired Good Night Medical, a business with operations across seven states, for about $7 million in cash. 

The acquisition provides Quipt Home Medical with expansion opportunities into Massachusetts, North Carolina and Texas, where it doesn’t have a presence. 

“Good Night Medical strengthens our healthcare network across multiple states, enhancing our national coverage sphere over an area that includes about 5 million COPD sufferers in the United States,” said Greg Crawford, chairman and CEO. “Furthermore, I believe that this acquisition will help us achieve long term cost saving goals that will drive our future margin acceleration by giving us increased scale across the organization.” 

Good Night has 10,000 active patients, bringing Quipt Home Medical’s total to 180,000. 

Quipt Home Medical’s integration process will include applying its subscription-based resupply program to Good Night and offering new complimentary clinical respiratory products and services, such as ventilation therapy, to the company’s referral and patient base. 

“We see several actionable synergies and believe our strong sleep re-supply business presents us with significant upside as we deploy our technology therein,” Crawford said. “Integration is the key to our ongoing financial and operating success, as it allows us to continue the strong pace of closing strategic acquisitions, alongside the stringent approach to our due-diligence process that provides us acquisition opportunities that work towards our long-term strategic objectives.” 

Quipt Home Medical also provided an update on its sleep therapy business, saying it began April with its largest on-hand inventory of CPAP devices since a significant recall started. 

“As noted in our fiscal Q1 2022 financial news release, we have seen significant backlog, with nearly 8,000 patients waiting for a sleep device,” Crawford said. “It is important to understand that this backlog is extremely sticky, with the entire industry experiencing supply constraints, and we view the revenue impact as delayed not lost. I am cautiously optimistic that as we move through the second half of the year that the supply pressures will continue to alleviate.” 

Humana to spin off majority interest in KAH hospice, personal care divisions 

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Humana will divest a 60% interest in Kindred at Home’s hospice and personal care divisions to private investment firm Clayton, Dubilier & Rice for approximately $2.8 billion. 

These divisions include patient-centered services for Hospice, Palliative, Community and Personal Care. 

“While palliative and hospice services are important components in the continuum of care that Humana offers patients, we are confident that we can deliver desired patient outcomes and improved customer experiences through partnership models rather than fully owning KAH Hospice,” said Susan Diamond, CFO of Humana. “We explored a broad range of alternatives and believe this transaction best allows Humana to divest majority ownership of these non-core businesses today, while still maintaining a strategic minority interest through our remaining stake.” 

Humana had previously indicated its intent to divest a majority stake in these non-core businesses when it acquired the remaining interest in Kindred at Home in April 2021. 

In March, Humana announced it would transition Kindred at Home’s home health division to the CenterWell Home Health Brand in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico and North Carolina. 

Humana’s transaction with CD&R is expected to close in the third quarter of 2022.

ACHC launches Telehealth Certification 

CARY, N.C. – The Accreditation Commission for Health Care, Inc. (ACHC) now offers a Telehealth Certification that focuses on improving patient outcomes for organizations using remote patient monitoring, biometrics and video and audio technologies for encounters or education. 

“The pandemic really pushed health care providers to adopt and grow telehealth services to maintain access for patients and, as a result, many of our clients were seeking ways to optimize this offering in the context of providing quality services,” said Teresa Hoosier, program director. “ACHC Telehealth Certification establishes national standards. It promotes best practices for digital healthcare services. It confirms quality, safety, and consistency – strengthening trust in an organization and assuring patients that they are receiving the best care possible.” 

The Telehealth Certification does not require accreditation and is available for any health care provider or organization that delivers health-related services via electronic information and telecommunication technologies.  

The certification is a focused review and evaluation of a defined program within a health care organization as measured against recognized standards for specialty care. For those organizations already ACHC accredited in another program, ACHC recommends applying for a Distinction in Telehealth, a similar program that takes into account the existing understanding of the organization’s structure, policies and procedures. 

Analysis: Seniors save with Medicare Advantage 

WASHINGTON – Beneficiaries with Medicare Advantage have $1,965 less in total annual health spending than those with fee-for-service Medicare, according to analysis conducted by ATI Advisory and supported by Better Medicare Alliance.    

“As this study shows, the path to meaningfully addressing Americans’ concerns about out-of-pocket costs and health care affordability and access for our nation’s seniors leads us to Medicare Advantage,” said Mary Beth Donahue, president and CEO of Better Medicare Alliance. “There is perhaps no more meaningful measurement of a program’s value than its effect on the consumer. In Medicare Advantage, we see that consumers are saving nearly $2,000 a year compared to FFS Medicare – savings that have continued to grow over recent years and are all the more valuable considering that over half of all Medicare Advantage beneficiaries live below 200% of the poverty line. With such robust cost protections across demographic groups, the value of Medicare Advantage for the Medicare dollar has never been clearer.”     

The analysis is based on 2019 Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey (MCBS) data, the most recent year available.     

The analysis also shows that consumer savings in Medicare Advantage persist across race and ethnicity. Specifically, beneficiaries with Medicare Advantage who are black report $1,104 less in total health spending compared to beneficiaries FFS Medicare, while those who are Latino see average savings of $1,421.    

“We see particularly strong results for historically disadvantaged populations, including Black and Hispanic beneficiaries and those who are low-income,” said Laura Benzing, analytic lead for ATI Advisory. 

Next Day Access Knoxville, Harmar Mobility partner for Make-A-Wish 

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - Next Day Access Knoxville and Harmar Mobility partnered with Make-A-Wish East Tennessee to donate and install a customized Helix curved stairlift for Madison Peak, a local child.  

“All of us at Make-A-Wish East Tennessee are so glad and grateful for the partnership between Harmar, Next Day Access and our chapter to provide a life-changing wish to Madison and her family,” said Christina Sayer, director of wish granting for Make-A-Wish East Tennessee. “Because of their generosity, they have not only granted Madison’s wish, but have also given us the opportunity to grant more wishes in our community.” 

Make-A-Wish East Tennessee reached out to Harmar, a manufacturer of stair, vehicle and platform lifts, with a stairlift request for Madison. 

Next Day Access Knoxville is a provider and installer of accessibility and mobility products, including wheelchair ramps, stairlifts, grab bars and other products to keep the aging population, individuals with disabilities, and veterans safe in their homes. 

Soleo Health scores 100 on URAC reaccreditation 

FRISCO, Texas – Soleo Health has received specialty pharmacy reaccreditation from URAC, earning a score of 100% for its pharmacy locations in Chicago, Philadelphia, Phoenix and Columbus, Ohio. “The latest URAC reaccreditation further validates Soleo Health’s unrelenting commitment to clinical excellence and the persistent delivery of the highest levels of quality patient care,” said Drew Walk, CEO, Soleo. “URAC offers an important barometer for evaluating the success of our pharmacy services and focus on therapies used in the treatment of complex conditions.” To receive URAC’s accreditation, Soleo Health displayed its full-service pharmacy capabilities in serving patients with complex conditions who require medications that are oral, injected or infused and typically require special handling and other specialty expertise. URAC surveys occur every three years.   

Better Living Now expands in Northwest 

HAUPPAGE, N.Y. – Better Living Now will open a new distribution facility in Twin Falls, Idaho, in June. The 19,000-square-foot location will allow the company to substantially cut its shipping times by 50% to 80% and greatly expand its 1-to-2-day service area and to scale faster. "We are very excited to be opening our newest location in Idaho and working with the government officials in the area” said Daniel Pope, president and CEO. “As an essential business, this new facility will be an incredible addition to the local and regional economy. It will assist in providing better service and support, transforming the health care journey for our customers, prescriber offices and health plan partners. We are happy to call Twin Falls our home, and we look forward to making a positive impact to the area.” The new facility will have an extensive inventory of critical diabetes, ostomy, urological, incontinence, wound care and breast pump supplies, and will feature state-of-the art shipping software systems. 

NCPA president discusses impact of M&A with FTC   

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – National Community Pharmacists Association President Michele Belcher participated in a recent Federal Trade Commission-Department of Justice online listening forum on the effects of mergers and acquisitions. Belcher, who is owner of Grants Pass Pharmacy in Grants Pass, Ore., described to FTC Chair Lina M. Khan, Assistant Attorney General Jonathan Kanter and others how the take-it-or-leave-it contracts between pharmacy benefit managers and independent pharmacies lead to harms including higher costs and restricted access to care. “As a small business owner and an advocate for my patients, I can say with certainty that vertical consolidation in our industry has limited access to care, stifled innovation, and increased prices for consumers,” Belcher wrote in her prepared comments. “I hope that you will see that our industry is in desperate need of regulatory oversight and that without it, small businesses will continue to be put out of business and consumers will be harmed.” This health care-focused forum is part of a series centering on industries and labor markets that are commonly affected by mergers that may reduce competition.   

Former Aetna exec joins Better Health advisory board  

SAN FRANCISCO – Robert Mirsky, MD, MMM, FAAFP, has joined Better Health’s board of advisors. Mirsky has extensive health plan experience across Medicare, Medicaid and commercial lines of business, most recently as chief medical officer and vice president of medical operations for Aetna Medicare. “An important part of improving the quality of life and overall health outcomes for underserved populations is addressing both their medical and psychosocial needs,” said Dr. Mirsky. “That's what Better Health provides their customers: a combination of the best home medical supplies along with peer coaching. I'm delighted to be working with them as they expand this innovative care model to more categories and improve outcomes for an even wider population.” Better Health is an e-commerce provider of ostomy and urological supplies. 

F&P’s Evora debuts in US 

AUCKLAND, New Zealand – Fisher & Paykel Healthcare has launched its Evora Full, a compact full-face mask for obstructive sleep apnea, in the United States. The mask has received FDA 510(k) clearance, paying the way for its sale in the U.S. in early May, following launches in Australia, New Zealand, Europe and Canada. “We welcome this clearance from the FDA and look forward to offering this unique full-face mask to our customers and patients,” said Justin Callahan, president-North America Operations. “The Evora Full marks our entry into the compact full-face mask segment and our teams have worked hard on achieving a final product that optimizes both comfort and performance.” Features of the Evora Full include a floating seal and stability wings to create the next generation of Dynamic Support Technology. F&P says the mask is backed by positive clinical trials showing 91% of participants rating the mask as “stable” or “very stable”; 93% reporting the masks to be “comfortable” or “very comfortable”; and 96% reporting the ability to sleep with the mask in their preferred sleeping position. 

Healogics, Vizient partner on outpatient wound care services 

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Healogics is now the sole service provider for outpatient wound care services for Vizient’s hospital network comprising more than 2,500 members for the next three years. To date, Healogics operates more than 600 outpatient wound care centers nationwide, one-third within Vizient-member hospitals. "With nearly 7 million people living with an advanced wound, a partnership such as this fosters faster collaboration to deliver a seamless patient experience", said David Bassin, CEO of Healogics. "Healogics looks forward to broadening our relationship with Vizient and their members with an ultimate goal of positively impacting the lives of those in the communities they serve." Healogics says it can reduce unwarranted variability in operational, clinical and financial outcomes, empowering hospitals to better serve their communities. It says Vizient members currently operating a wound care center or considering outpatient wound care as a new service line can connect with the Healogics Client Solutions team to review data-driven market intelligence to identify growth opportunities for their hospital or health system. 

JAMA article highlights remote monitoring 

IRVINE, Calif. – A new article in the Journal of the American Medical Association concludes that, through recent technological advances in remote monitoring, a patient’s physiological needs can now more often be the primary factor in determining the level of monitoring they receive, rather than their physical location (i.e., the monitoring capabilities of the beds in a particular hospital care area). The article, “Remote Patient Monitoring During COVID-19: An Unexpected Patient Safety Benefit,” includes research that used the Masimo SafetyNext remote patient monitoring solution. The authors of the article, Peter J. Pronovost, MD, PhD, and colleagues Melissa Cole, MSN, and Robert Hughes, DO, at University Hospitals Health System (UH) and Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, note that research estimated daily assessment and three-week follow-up of at-home pulse oximetry monitoring was projected to be potentially associated with a mortality rate of six per 1,000 patients with COVID-19 vs. 26 per 1,000 without at-home monitoring. The authors outline a series of steps public health agencies and health systems should take to effectively encourage and implement remote patient monitoring. In their conclusion to the article, they note, "Home monitoring and hospital at-home models offer the potential to transform care and potentially allow a substantial proportion of hospitalized patients to receive care from home. Yet health systems will need to collaborate with technology companies to accelerate learning and produce greater value for patients, clinicians, and health care organizations." 

CUNY, Numotion partner to boost wheelchair basketball program 

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – The City University of New York (CUNY) Inclusive and Adaptive Sports Program has landed its first sponsor: Numotion. As part of the sponsorship, CUNY’s program will promote Numotion through various mediums, including digital signage and website ads, as well as through social media and other publications. "Under CEO Mike Swinford's leadership, Numotion has continued to be a leader in the durable medical equipment space, as well as medical supplies,” said Ryan Martin, CUNY’s director for Inclusive and Adaptive Sports. “They’ve had a tremendous history of supporting adaptive sports programs and investing in the community they serve. We are thrilled in their investment in our programs at CUNY and look forward to a successful partnership."  To date, the CUNY Inclusive and Adaptive Sports program has more than 35 students across 14 campuses. The CUNY men’s and women’s wheelchair basketball teams just wrapped up their inaugural season at the 2022 National Wheelchair Basketball Association (NWBA) Intercollegiate Wheelchair Basketball National Championships at the University of Texas-Arlington.  

ARYA launches POC 

DENVER – ARYA BioMed Corp. has entered the home oxygen therapy market with a portable oxygen concentrator. The company says its POC weighs only five pounds with an eight-cell battery and only six pounds with a 16-cell battery. It features pulse-flow settings ranging from 1-5, a battery life of up to eight hours with the standard eight-cell battery pack, a sensitive breath detection, an auto-dose safety feature and more. It has also been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use while flying. Other benefits of the POC, according to the company: a five-year warranty on sieve beds and a one-year supply of free nasal cannulas, tubing and filters. 

VGM offers insight on data 

WATERLOO, Iowa – VGM & Associates has released its second playbook of 2022: “VGM Playbook: Growing Your Business with Data and Technology.” Topics in the playbook include using real-time data to optimize positive outcomes and grow your business, and leveraging remote patient monitoring. “There are many opportunities out there to enhance our way of doing business and positively impact consumer and clinician relationships, including the implementation of data and technology in our business operations,” said Clint Geffert, president of VGM & Associates. “Our hope is that this resource will provide you with insight on how to maintain your business operations while integrating new technology and data practices to enhance the patient experience and improve your bottom line.” VGM members can download their copy of the playbook at 

CMS addresses urgent need for orthotics 

WASHINGTON – CMS has published a FAQ for situations when patients need orthotic braces earlier than the two-day expedited timeframe. The agency says providers need to bill claims for L0648, L0650, L1832, L1833 and L1851 in these situations with the ST modifier and they will not undergo prior authorization. In a competitive bidding area, they need to bill these claims with the modifiers KV, J5 or J4, along with the ST modifier. Starting April 13, L0648, L0650, L1832, L1833 and L1851 were phased-in to the prior authorization program in New York, Illinois, Florida and California, with full implementation set for Oct. 19.


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