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In brief: Viemed investment, prior auth expansion, Belluscura update

In brief: Viemed investment, prior auth expansion, Belluscura update

LAFAYETTE, La. – Viemed Healthcare has made a strategic investment in ModoHealth, a value-based care and patient management platform connecting payers, patients and post-acute providers. 

ModoHealth expects to use the proceeds of the investment to fund the expansion of its proprietary patient management network, which combines clinical tools, remote patient monitoring, data analysis and patient-centric engagement. 

“We are incredibly excited to partner with the team at ModoHealth to grow the innovative population health platform,” said Viemed CEO Casey Hoyt. “Data-driven care coordination solutions available in the home are critical to the evolution of value-based health care delivery models. In addition to supporting ModoHealth patients as a technology enabled post-acute provider on its platform, we look forward to expanding Viemed’s collaboration with ModoHealth as a strategic investor.” 

In exchange for its $2 million cash investment, Viemed received an 18-month secured convertible promissory note and participation in the ModoHealth provider network, using its software platform to improve patient outcomes through enhanced patient engagement. 

  • Read about how Viemed secured new funding of up to $90M in November. 

Masimo, Royal Philips expand partnership 

IRVINE, Calif. and ANDOVER, Mass. – Masimo and Royal Philips have announced an expansion of their partnership to augment remote patient monitoring capabilities in home telehealth applications with the Masimo W1 advanced health tracking watch.  

“Expanding our partnership with Philips in this way is a win-win for patients and clinicians everywhere and is an important part of our multi-year plan to bring the best of hospital monitoring to the home, while continuing to improve access to quality hospital care,” said Bilal Muhsin, COO of Masimo Healthcare. 

The W1 will integrate with Philips’s enterprise patient monitoring ecosystem to advance the forefront of telemonitoring and telehealth. The combined innovation, which draws upon the expertise of both companies in monitoring, connectivity and automation, will be highlighted later this month at Arab Health 2023. 

Masimo W1 offers accurate, continuous pulse oximetry measurements and other insightful health data. Using Masimo’s secure health data cloud, it will relay patient information to the Philips patient monitoring ecosystem for remote clinician surveillance.  

“At Philips, we believe in an open ecosystem of information that enables physicians in their daily routine, allows for them to access and process vital patient information and deploy a wide range of measurements and patient-worn technologies,” said Christoph Pedain, general manager, Hospital Patient Monitoring at Philips. “Our integration of the latest Masimo technologies is a testament to that strategy, and we are delighted to deepen our relationship with Masimo.” 

Masimo W1 for use in medical applications is CE marked and is pending clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. 

Belluscura makes 'considerable progress’ 

LONDON and PLANO, Texas – Belluscura shipped or received orders for 2,850 X-PLOR portable oxygen concentrators by Dec. 31, 2022, the company stated in a trading update for the year. 

The company anticipates its adjusted EBITDA loss will be in line with market expectations. Its retained cash balances of $1.8 million amounted to $11.9 million, with inventory and inventory deposits. 

"During the year we have made considerable progress,” said CEO Robert Rauker. “We have enhanced our production, quality accreditation and supply chain, positioning us well to deliver on the demand we are seeing for our devices, as we expand our distribution partners and geographical reach. Market reception for the next generation X-PLOR and Nomad App has been extremely positive, with an encouraging level of forward orders. We are very excited about the upcoming launch of the DISCOV-R, which we believe will be a transformational product, and we look to the future with confidence." 

Belluscura expects to launch the first DISCOV-R POCs for pre-market evaluation in the first quarter, with full commercialization anticipated in the second quarter. The company says the DISCOV-R is the first ambulatory pulse-dose and two-liter continuous flow POC in the world. It also says the unit, which weighs less than any comparable dual-flow oxygen concentrator on the market, produces nearly three times the oxygen by weight than its competition.   

Among other highlights in the update: 

  • Belluscura completed its transition to U.S.-based manufacturing by July 2022, paving the way for the company to produce 536 X-PLOR POCs in its in-house facility. With Innomax coming online in the first quarter of 2023, it expects to more than double production of the units. 
  • The company’s collaboration agreement with the VGM Group has resulted in 17 new distribution agreements in the last three months, including an agreement with a leading DME provider and distributor in the US that serves 2 million patients online and through 1,000 locations. 
  • Read about how Belluscura is doubling down on the POC market. 

Healthcare Equipment acquires Powell Medical 

DURHAM, N.C. – Healthcare Equipment Inc., a family-owned provider of custom rehab and DME, has acquired Powell Medical, a provider of pediatric-focused custom rehab and DME. 

Tom Powell, who owns Powell Medical, is retiring. 

“I was humbled when Tom contacted me,” said Larry Lankford, owner of Healthcare Equipment. “The fact that Tom had the faith and trust in Healthcare Equipment Inc. to continue his high level of service to the Powell Medical family of clients spoke volumes about the reputation we’ve built.” 

Healthcare Equipment has been in operation since 1979. 

The acquisition of the 20-year-old Powell Medical allows Healthcare Equipment to strengthen its position in the marketplace and better advocate for clients through stronger relationships with vendors and greater influence with regulators and lawmakers, says the company. 

“I am pleased to say that this acquisition also brings skilled and experienced people to our team,” said Sara Warren, president. “The transition for Powell’s clients should be that much easier with the familiar faces added to our own great team.” 

The deal was finalized Jan. 13. 

ACHC publishes new analysis of quality review 

CARY, N.C. – The Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC) has published new quality review analyses in its publication the Surveyor.  

The special reports include key insights and deficiencies from 2022 survey data, covering a wide range of health care environments from ambulatory surgery centers to home care agencies and sleep labs, among others. These resources help organizations benchmark performance against their peers to proactively address common issues as part of continuous quality improvement.  

“Leading with education is at the forefront of our development strategy to help support these organizations in their improvement efforts through accreditation,” said José Domingos, president and CEO of ACHC. “We wish to empower our health care organizations to address deficiencies head-on with a 360-degree approach to accreditation.”  

Some key findings include: 

  • DMEPOS deficiencies – One newly-identified standard ties to an expectation of familiarity with federal requirements, and the other standards are identified in the report as frequently-cited deficiencies, which tie directly to the federal requirements. 
  • Sleep center deficiencies – An increase in standards identified as out of compliance in comparison to 2021 data may be attributed to the increase of survey volume as sleep labs reopened or pivoted to home-based testing as COVID-19 shifts to an endemic state. 

For more information about ACHC programs or to access special editions of the Surveyor, visit 

Sec. Becerra visits Grubb’s Pharmacy 

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra visited with Grubb’s Pharmacy owner Michael Kimm and his team in Washington, D.C., recently as part of an event to promote zero cost-sharing vaccines for Medicare patients, according to the National Community Pharmacists Association. 

The secretary is working to boost awareness among seniors and caregivers that, as of Jan. 1, 2023, policies in the Inflation Reduction Act make adult vaccines free for Medicare beneficiaries and cap monthly cost sharing for insulin products to no more than $35. 

Kim, an NCPA member, thanked Becerra for visiting the pharmacy and told him these policies will ease financial burdens for his patients. He also discussed the need for reforming pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs). NCPA CEO B. Douglas Hoey was also at the meeting. 

CMS expands required list 

WASHINGTON – CMS has added 10 more HCPCS codes to a required list for a face-to-face encounter /written order prior to delivery, according to VGM Government Relations. 

The new codes include the following for back, knee and ankle/foot braces: L0631, L1843, L1932, L1940, L1951, L1960, L1970, L2005, L2036. Also included: E0748, osteogenesis stimulator, electrical, non-invasive, spinal applications. 

The effective date for the news codes is April 2023. 

The required list, which already includes all codes in the power mobility device category and seven other codes, now includes a total of 63 codes. 

When a code makes the required list, a patient must have a face-to-face encounter with their treating practitioner documenting the medical necessity for the item being prescribed. The medical necessity must meet the coverage criteria outlined within the respective local coverage determination (LCD).    

In addition, the written order prior to delivery is required and must be completed within six months after the required F2F encounter. 

VGM releases first playbook of 2023 

WATERLOO, Iowa – VGM & Associates has released its latest playbook, “VGM Playbook: Forecasting 2023.” The publication contains insight from industry experts on trends, opportunities, and challenges; the state of DMEPOS; marketplace disruption, cash injections, additional revenue streams, and outsourcing; and updates on reimbursement, legislation, compliance, technology, data, security, workforce trends and more. “As we begin the new year, the DMEPOS industry is set up for success,” says Krista McNurlen, senior vice president, marketing, VGM & Associates. “The need for our services and the products we provide our customers will continue to remain strong in 2023, and this playbook aims to help us understand where we as an industry can evolve and truly prosper to best serve our customers.” Members can download their copy at or by logging in to the VGM members-only portal and downloading it from the Playbook tab. 

Srinivasan moves to RestorixHealth 

METAIRIE, La. – Kris Srinivasan has joined RestorixHealth, a wound care solutions provider, as vice president, strategy and business development. Srinivasan has more than 10 years of experience in health care strategic consulting and business development, most recently with McKesson, where he led the development, design and execution of payer strategy for their HME and post-acute markets. “Kris is an outstanding addition to our team,” states Jeff Bowman, division president, post-acute operations. “His experience in health care delivery strategies paired with his entrepreneurial mindset will benefit us greatly as we strengthen our position as industry leaders.” In this newly created position, Srinivasan will be responsible for identifying and investigating new opportunities that align with RestorixHealth’s mission, collaborating across all divisions with a preliminary focus on the post-acute division. 

BOC hires new VP 

OWINGS MILLS, Md. – The Board of Certification/Accreditation (BOC) has hired Jane Webster as vice president of strategy, growth and regulatory affairs. In this role, Webster will develop strategic priorities for BOC’s next phase of growth and will oversee its business development and sales functions, as well as regulatory compliance operations to ensure the organization continues to fulfill its mission. “Jane is a strong leader with experience in strategic planning and managing diverse departments with strong results,” says BOC’s President & CEO Judi Knott. “We are pleased to welcome her to BOC’s leadership team and look forward to leveraging her professional experience and insights.” Webster brings decades of expertise in business strategy and implementation, product and operational planning, fiscal budget management, workforce optimization and business analytics, most recently as managing director for Upward Associates, a boutique health care management consulting practice. She holds both an MBA from Johns Hopkins University Carey Business School and a Bachelor of Science in nursing from Albany State University of New York. 

Mobility City opens in Arizona 

BOCA RATON, Fla. – Mobility City Holdings, a provider of mobility equipment, has opened a new location in Gilbert, Ariz. “Our first location in Arizona opened in Gilbert, an East Valley town convenient to most Phoenix residents,” said Diane Baratta, CEO, Mobility City. “In addition to a retail store, every franchise location employs repair technicians who make house calls and provide repair services so that no neighborhood in Phoenix is out of reach. As Arizonans get to know our excellent customer service, we expect to see more showrooms in the greater Phoenix area.” Mobility City of Phoenix is a woman-owned business, led by Adriane Power and Shane Power. “We want to help as many families as possible with their mobility issues and it is important to us to leave a positive, lasting impact in Gilbert and the valley,” they said. Mobility City of Phoenix plans to open a Las Vegas location soon. 

RESNA, CTF urgently seek comments on paper 

ARLINGTON, Va. – RESNA and the Clinician Task Force seek comments on a draft position paper, “RESNA and CTF Position on the Application of Supported Standing Devices: Current State of the Literature.” The paper describes the results of a rigorous scoping review, analyzing results through an International Classification of Function (ICF) lens, with the goal of producing a position paper explaining the impact of supported standing in a variety of devices. Due to an urgent advocacy opportunity, the organizations are shortening the public review period to 30 days. Members of the RESNA Wheeled Mobility SIG have already done a review and those comments are incorporated in this draft. The paper updates “RESNA Application of Wheelchair Standing Devices.” Please forward comments to Cara Masselink at 

CMS announces ACO initiatives 

WASHINGTON – CMS has announced that three innovative accountable care initiatives will grow and provide higher quality care to more than 13.2 million people with Medicare in 2023. More than 700,000 health care providers and organizations will participate in at least one of the three initiatives: the Medicare Shared Savings Program; the Accountable Care Organization Realizing Equity, Access, and Community Health (ACO REACH) Model; and the Kidney Care Choices (KCC) Model. This growth furthers CMS’s goal of having all people with traditional Medicare in an accountable care relationship with their health care provider by 2030. “Through the CMS accountable care initiatives and working with our partners, we have made significant progress in addressing our greatest health care challenges,” said CMS Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure. “Health care providers coming together as Accountable Care Organizations provide high quality and equitable care to people with Medicare while improving the sustainability of the Medicare program.”  

AZ MediQuip names two new directors 

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – AZ MediQuip has promoted Evan Conlon to director of operations. He will be responsible for leading stores and the delivery and service function of the business. “I am excited to see Evan’s continued career growth here at AZ MediQuip,” said CEO Lane Hamm. “His intimate knowledge of our customer and product solutions make him the perfect person to lead our operations teams.  I am looking forward to being a part of his continued growth and witnessing the success he will help bring to our business.” Conlon joined AZ MediQuip in 2017 and has worked in a variety of store functions. The company has also named Brent Hedges director of merchandising, succeeding Conlon. Hedges comes to AZ MediQuip from Harkins Popcorn & Snacks, a division of Harkins Theatres, where he was the logistics manager. “I am excited to have an individual with Brent’s background joining our business,” Hamm said. “His experience in multi-unit buying, along with his background in logistics and supply chain, are the perfect complement for us.” 

AZ MediQuip named Lane Hamm CEO in December, replacing Mark Nicotera. 

Boom Home Medical launches designer home medical products 

LOS ANGELES – The founders of Clear Health Advisors have launched Boom Home Medical to, in their words, “reinvent home medical products with beautifully designed, highly functional and easy-to-use products that empower people to care for themselves with dignity.” Byrdie Lifson Pompan and Dr. Valerie Ulene are launching the company with toileting products and have plans for bathing, dressing and mobility products throughout 2023. "We offer our customers the opportunity to care for their basic needs with dignity," said Byrdie Lifson Pompan, co-founder. "By 2025 there will be 75 million baby boomers over the age of 65 and, for the first time ever in the US, there will be more people over the age of 65 than under the age of 13. Baby boomers have experienced innovation in every consumer product category, and now can experience it in home healthcare products too. Nobody wants the same durable home medical equipment that their grandparents used." Boom Home Medical’s first product, Loona, is a personal bedside urinal designed for anyone with female anatomy. Roughly 50 million Americans wake up several times a night with the urge to urinate, a medical condition called nocturia, the company says, and Loona minimizes its impact on sleep and eliminates the risks of walking to the bathroom in the dark. Pompan and Ulene partnered with HERBST Produkt, an industrial designer for innovative brands like Brita, to create Loona. Currently, Loona is available on Amazon and at in three colors: blue, coral dream and moon grey. 

Belluscura names Bob Fary to top sales role  

LONDON and PLANO, Texas – Belluscura has named Bob Fary senior vice president of global sales. Fary has more than 30 years of experience in the respiratory industry, including top roles at major oxygen concentrator manufacturers and DME companies, including Inogen. "We are very excited that Bob has joined our team as we enter the next stage of growth at Belluscura,” said CEO Robert Rauker. “His deep knowledge of the portable oxygen concentrator sector and its channels to market will be invaluable as we build on our success to date to bring our latest generation of POCs to market."  During the past two decades, Fary and his team were directly responsible for or contributed to the sale of more than 1 million POCs, generating revenues in excess of $1 billion. "I am delighted to have joined Belluscura at this important juncture for the company as it captures the demand in its markets for its best-in-class products,” Fary said. “The planned launch of DISCOV-R will be another exciting step in meeting the needs of patients around the world. I look forward to working alongside the wider executive team to grow the company's sales in the U.S. and beyond." Belluscura expects to launch the first DISCOV-R POCs for pre-market evaluation in the first quarter, with full commercialization anticipated in the second quarter. 

Show organizers see positive signs for Medtrade 

DALLAS – Exhibitor signups for Medtrade, scheduled for March 28-30 in Dallas, are ahead of Medtrade East last year, show organizers say. “The current level of demand for booth space is something I have not experienced in my time with the show,” said York Schwab, show director. “Medtrade 2023 is already larger than Medtrade East 2022 in Atlanta, and we are still months away from the Dallas show.” Demand for exhibitor space actually exceeded what was available recently, prompting some changes to the show floor, organizers say. “We had to move the New Product Pavilion to the entry hall due to booth demand,” Schwab said. Attendance is also tracking well, organizers say. Early bird rates for the show are in effect through Jan. 18. Register here.


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