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Consolidation continues in neb-med space

Consolidation continues in neb-med space

TEXARKANA, Texas - Neb-med industry insiders are remaining mum about the sale in June of Senior Respiratory Solutions to Med4Home, Lincare's nebulizer medication business.

Senior Respiratory confirmed the sale, but had no further comment, so we combed through our archives to see what we had written about these companies before.

Senior Respiratory was one of the largest remaining independent providers of nebulizer medications. In 2009, according to the HME Databank, it was the sixth largest Medicare biller for inhalation drugs. Senior billed for 14,227 beneficiaries. Lincare and Med4Home ranked Nos. 1 and 2, billing for 169,823 and 61,964 beneficiaries respectively.

Over the last several years, Senior Respiratory had been quietly acquiring patients from other HME providers who, frustrated by low margins and a roller coaster fee schedule, wanted to get out of the market. In 2008, the provider added nearly 11,000 new neb-med patients, picking them from Praxair and other providers.

Because Senior Respiratory positioned itself as a partner to indie HME providers, rather than as a competitor, they were an attractive buyer compared to Med4Home. Providers feared Med4Home would go after their oxygen patients.

Med4Home, Lincare's nebulizer medication business, made a splash in August 2008, when it acquired 20,000 patients from the Dallas-based Independent Home Pharmacy, whose parent company, the Dallas-based Soporex, filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection.


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